Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has instructed Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) not to let sewage into the lakes, drains, rivers and wells of Bengaluru, in the backdrop of numerous complaints from the public.
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The letter to BWSSB had been issued on March 30, 2014. However, a press note from KSPCB says that as nothing was done so far, KSPCB is releasing the matter to the notice of the media.
The press release issued by the KSPCB says that KSPCB Chairman Vaman Acharya has instructed the BWSSB not to let municipal waste to the water sources. Houses, apartments, layouts, townships etc should never leave their waste water into drains and lakes. In such instances, suitable fines should be levied in order to ensure that such violations don’t happen in future.
KSPCB has also asked the BWSSB to clean up the water bodies that are polluted. The offenders who pollute should be named publicly. There should not be permissions given to the townships or apartments where there is a possibility of leaving the sewage into nearby water bodies.
The letter also proposes to constitute a vigilance team that has suitable powers to protect water bodies and act on the complaints of water pollution.
If the BWSSB officials don’t act on the directions of the letter, they will have to face action as per Water Pollution Prevention and Control Act, warns KSPCB chairman Vaman Acharya.
This warning has been given in the backdrop of complaints by retired Wing Commander G B Athri,on the pollution of Arakere, Madiwala and Subbarayan Kere.
Where there’s a will, there’s away!
In January, BWSSB had launched an innovative system of treating the sewage flown in Storm Water Drain adjacent to the KR Puram Sewage Treatment Plant.
Storm Water Drains are not meant for sewage flow, but only for runoff during the rainy season. Unfortunately, sewage is being let in these canals. In this context, BWSSB arranged for a small barrage based treatment system, which is cost-effective and produced immediate result.
Constructing a medium height barrage across the SWD, collecting the sewage through a pipe by way of gravity into a pit, pumping this sewage into the STP, releasing the same, but fully treated water to the same SWD at a short distance of the barrage which eventually will reach the designated lake – this is the workflow for the new system. As a result, treated water, not the sewage reaches the lakes, thus the lakes will get highly reduced quantity of sewage inflow. The cost incurred was only Rs 95,000.
Many STPs in Bangalore are incidentally situated adjacent to these storm water drains, hence the possibility of replicating this new system is a near possibility.
The installed capacity of K R Puram STP is 20 MLD. But only 5 MLD of sewage is being treated now. After installing this barrage based additional system, the capacity utilisation has gone upto 10 MLD. The total installed capacity of the STPs in Bangalore is 842 MLD, but the load is only around 40%. It was estimated that the average capacity utilisation can be raised by 5-12 MLD in each STP, by way of installing these barrage based pumping of sewage from SWDs.