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Green Rural Development

The water business

Water has become a new pet subject for Indian industry. Not because it is concerned with the depleting water resources or its own contributions to growing pollution. Because it sees a new and lucrative business opportunity. With support from the World Bank, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and other associations are competing with each other to establish their role in the water business.

Water for the Nag along

Nag village, in Gangolihat block of Pithoragarh district quenched its thirst by capturing the rain water that is plentiful, but only during the monsoons. While the state is struggling to source water from drying rivers and ground water, the citizens of  Upper Naag (Malla Naag), found themselves better off by capturing the rain that falls on their village area.

Grains of Despair: Sand mining in India

In June 2011, Swami Nigamananda Saraswati died after a four month fast in protest of sand mining on the banks of Ganga.   His death is a warning. If reckless sand mining continues, the Ganga and the people whose lives and livelihoods are fueled by it will face serious consequences. (See Down To Earth article, A swami and sand mafia, http://www.downtoearth.org.in/content/swami-and-sand-mafia)

The Groundwater Up Project

A film by Tarini Manchanda Vikaas ki kahani gaon-gaon se hai dur kyun? Nadi toh hai paas, yeh paani dur –dur kyun? Why is the story of development so far away from each village? Why is the river close by and the water so far?

The 6th World Water Forum, Marseille, France

Time for Solutions: 12-17 March, 2012 The 6th World Water Forum is scheduled to take place in Marseille, France between 12th and 17th March, 2012. The focal theme for this Forum is “Time for Solutions”. It aims to deliver a “Marseille Framework for Action” by the end of the week.

News Updates

Anyone having water connection must pay tax: court A Division Bench of the Madras High Court affirmed that the Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (CMWSSB) can demand water charges from all owners/ occupants of an apartment even though the apartment has only a common sump and no individual water connection has either been applied for by such owners/occupants or provided by the board.

Make money while the water lasts

In this issue of the newsletter, the second part of the PPP story looks at small informal water service providers, taking the example of Delhi. More than 50% of the population of Delhi is actually served by these informal water service providers. Although the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) is mandated to supply water to the poor living in unauthorised colonies, JJ clusters, resettlement colonies and urban and rural villages, the reality is that people living in these non-planned areas pay more than 750 times of what DJB charges the well-off living in planned colonies.

Are PPPs here to stay

The first part of this article focussed on the recent initiatives by the government to involve big and established private players for municipal water supply. The argument behind the privatisation moves is that private players need to be brought in to recover costs and bring in  improved efficiency and service in urban water supply.

Water footprint

The global water footprint is 7450Gm3/yr, which is in average 1240m3/cap/yr. The United States of America has an average water footprint of 2480m3/cap/yr whereas China has an average water footprint of 700m3/cap/yr. The factors that affect water footprint are: 1. Total volume of consumption, which is generally related to gross national income of a country. (eg. USA, Italy and Switzerland)

Lake clean up using algae

Mr. T Sampath Kumar, a chartered accountant by profession has developed an innovative product to clean up lakes. His idea in simple: hasten the growth of diatom algae, which in turn provides oxygen to bacteria that consume lake pollutant substances, thus cleaning up lakes. This process is very similar to what happens naturally -- blue-green algae provide oxygen to bacteria to decompose nutrients.