Ganga clean-up programme has failed: IIT consortium

News this week
Man searched for coins in polluted water of Ganga river at Allahabad (Source: IWP Flickr photos) Man searched for coins in polluted water of Ganga river at Allahabad (Source: IWP Flickr photos)

Ganga clean-up fails, thanks to multiple authorities and no monitoring

The consortium of seven IITs has told the National Green Tribunal that the multiplicity of authorities, lack of assistance from state governments and dearth of monitoring has resulted in the failure of Ganga cleaning programme. The consortium has also told the bench that there is always a one-way interaction between the ministries and experts as the former never responds to the recommendations provided. At the India Rivers Week 2016 held in New Delhi last week,  Shashi Shekhar, secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, has admitted that the ministry has failed in its job to safeguard the country's rivers and has blamed the nexus between politicians and construction business for the exploitation of rivers.

Mumbai's water supply system gets upgraded

A 15-km-long water tunnel which has the capacity to carry 4,000 million litres of water daily has been commissioned between Andheri and Thane in Mumbai. The tunnel has been constructed to phase out above-the-ground British-era pipelines carrying water from reservoirs to the water treatment plant. It will also help in reducing losses owing to leakages and tampering. The project is being touted as the country's biggest project in terms of capacity and is expected to ensure seamless water supply in the next 100 years.

Puttenahalli lake revival: Floating islands show good result

The first of its kind project of artificial floating islands was launched in Puttenahalli lake in Bengaluru this year. The low-cost, low-tech approach to phase out sewage remnants from the lake is showing encouraging results as the Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) of the lake has come down by two-thirds between June and October. The islands were manufactured using the common polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes and discarded one litre PET bottles and three species of nutrient-absorbing plants have been planted on these islands.

Mysuru records its lowest rainfall in 60 years

Mysuru district has received only 213 mm rainfall this year as against the average of 685 mm last year. Also, this year both the south-west and the north-east monsoons have failed resulting in the lowest recorded rainfall in 60 years. All taluks in the district have been declared drought-affected this year and the authorities have failed in providing sufficient water for irrigation due to poor storage in dams.

Resident experts become a new model to fight water contamination

The non-government organisations in various parts of the country are roping in locals to map levels of water contamination in the water resources and highlight the issues of sanitation and hygiene in specific areas. With the growing environment concerns, such projects are making a shift from traditional data collection by experts to a movement towards a crowd-sourced model that relies on local participation. However, the quality and relevance of such data are being questioned and concerns are raised towards making such data public. 

This is a roundup of important news from November 28 - December 3, 2016. Also read the policy matters this week. 

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