Rain water harvesting not feasible in UT: Civic report

Study prepared by Municipal Corporation’s Public Health Wing,will be discussed at General House meeting on Friday.

Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigarh | Published: March 28, 2012 12:52:00 am

Study prepared by Municipal Corporation’s Public Health Wing,will be discussed at General House meeting on Friday

Rain water harvesting is not feasible in the city. With the water level requiring recharging in the deep acquifiers rather than the shallow,the concept would not be suitable for Chandigarh. A report on the issue has been prepared by the Public Health Wing of the Municipal Corporation and will be discussed at the meeting of the General House on March 30.

The water level in the city is falling at the rate of 1 to 1.5 metres per year in the deep acquifiers. The fall is more in the northern sectors compared to the southern sectors. Keeping in view the alarming dip in the water level,it has been discussed time and again that there is a need for introducing rain water harvesting techniques.

The report by the civic body states that the rain water harvesting system is generally used for recharging shallow acquifiers. In case deep acquifiers are to be recharged using this system,it would require digging of up to 300 metres. This would cost as much as installing a tubewell. The expenditure,therefore,would be very high and would imply that the technique cannot be used on a large scale.

In order to create the facility for rainwater harvesting,a filter is created. Water is made to pass through various layers so that there are no impurities in the water that is recharging the acquifiers. These filters are cleaned at regular intervals. In case of deep acquifiers,maintenance of the filter is another issue that has been raised in the report.

“The report has been prepared by analysing data of the past 10 years. The changing water level,the spring level of the tubewells,etc has been studied,” said Superintending Engineer (Public Health) R C Diwan. “The recharging of deep acquifiers with rain water harvesting is not feasible. Water would need to be conserved by other methods including checking wastage,” he added.

During a House meeting held in January,concern had been expressed about Chandigarh’s falling water table and Union Minister Pawan Bansal had suggested that a report should be prepared on the issue. The report has suggested that measures like using tertiary treated water for irrigation would be required to save water. It is further suggested that additional water supply be arranged from Kajauli.

The city’s peak water demand in summer is 113 million gallons per day (mgd). At present 87 mgd is available. Of this,67 mgd is received from different phases of Kajauli and the remaining from tubewells. Every year 10 per cent of the tubewells become defunct due to the decreasing spring level.

14 teams to monitor water use

The Municipal Corporation will deploy 14 teams to conduct checks in different sectors against water wastage from April 15. Residents found washing cars or watering lawns in the morning would be issued notice for the first violation. For the second violation a fine of Rs 2,000 would be imposed. The earlier fine was Rs 500. This would be added to the violator’s water bill.

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