The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has made it compulsory for construction sites to use treated greywater for all their construction activities.
It has also directed the shopping malls to use treated water for their water-based cooling systems. The order was passed to save fresh & potable water and reduce the wastage of groundwater. In general, the builders/developers of Pune city have welcomed the usage of treated water generated through sewage treatment plants. However, they have highlighted some practical issues.
Suhas Merchant, the former president of the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI), found the municipal corporation’s intention to be good. Still, the civic body needs to address a few problems. Practical and logistic bottlenecks like tanker availability, transport cost, quality of treated water, and storage at site, among other issues, need to be addressed.
The Head of The Water department, Mr. Aniruddha Pawaskar, highlighted that the starting phase has some practical issues in any new scheme. While making it mandatory, the PMCs approach should be positive, and the civic body will address the practical problems faced by the builder community.
He further mentioned that the builders are hiring borewell water which is paid for by them. The authorities are ready to give builders treated water free of cost, but they are not prepared to pay transport charges. The civic body has a lot more capacity for treated water than the demand for construction activity. In the future, when this becomes a routine, the PMC will ask tanker owners to give different colors to treated water tankers. Pune would be the first city in India to use treated water for construction activity.
Another official said that the civic body demanded more water from the irrigation department, stating reasons including the merger of 23 villages and ease of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. Thus, These bottlenecks need to be dealt with to streamline using treated water at construction sites.
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