Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers Ananth Kumar and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday laid the foundation stone for a sewage treatment plant to be set up by two public sector units in Trombay. It will ease the load on the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
The plant, which Rashtriya Chemical & Fertilizers (RCF) will set up with the aid of Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL), will provide treated water to the two companies to lessen their dependence on the municipal water supply stock to the extent of 15 million litres a day.
The plant, which RCF plans to put into operation within 28 months from the award of contract, will have the capacity to treat 22.5 million litres of sewage per day. The project cost is Rs 200 crore, of which BPCL will provide 40 per cent as an interest-free deposit.
The RCF already has one sewage treatment plant of a similar capacity since 1999-2000. The company purchases municipal waste and processes it to produce purified water amounting to about 13.6 million litres per day.
Fadnavis said, “Today, the problems plaguing society are non-availability of clean water, pollution, and lack of sewage treatment and solid waste management. Fifty per cent sewage generated by the city is let out in the sea untreated.”
He added that according to a report by a private research firm, by 2020, 70 per cent sewage will go untreated and per capita availability of water would be halved.
The chief minister, however, turned down the RCF’s demand to access municipal sewage for free for the treatment plant as against the current situation where it pays a fee, citing the example of Nagpur, his home town.
“The Nagpur Municipal Corporation earns Rs 16 crore by selling sewage to Maharashtra State Power Generation Company for electricity production,” the chief minister said.