The CSIR (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research) – National Chemical Laboratory (NCL) on Wednesday commenced operations of a Sewage Treatment Plant (STP), which uses technology capable of generating portable water from processed sewage water.
The plant was virtually inaugurated by Dr Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Science and Technology and vice-president of CSIR. This plant has a storage capacity of 4 lakh litres, and will be used to recycle water generated at both NCL as well as neighbouring CSIR-Unit for Research and Development of Information Products (URDIP).
The STP operates on Phytorid technology, developed by CSIR-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Nagpur. Specially identified wetland plants, which feed on effluents present in sewage water, are used for water recycling. As a result, the processing is environment friendly and cost effective.
“Less than two per cent of sewage water contains chemical effluents. We have identified about 40 to 50 varieties of plants that grow in wetlands and will be used to treat sewage water,” said Rakesh Kumar, director, NEERI. “Initially, the recycled water will be used for gardening purposes.”
Encouraging all CSIR labs to install similar plants on their campuses, Dr Harsh Vardhan said, “All laboratories should set up STPs using this technology by 2021.” He added that NEERI, in its initial survey carried out in the country, had found that a majority of STPs were lying defunct, either due to lack of round-the-clock power supply or lack of expertise in operating them.
“This is the reason rivers like Yamuna are presently in such deplorable conditions,” the minister said, adding that recycling and reusing are ways forward for better water management.
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