Results of study on water quality in city released

‘Neer Naadi,’ a programme organised by five green non-governmental organisations here on Friday to mark the World Water Day to stress judicious use of water saw a 5.3-feet-tall person giving a demonstration on how to bathe in just 1.5 litres of water.

During the event, the results of a study on water quality undertaken by non-governmental organisations and students of Nehru College of Arts and Science in 83 of the 100 wards that comprise the Coimbatore Corporation were presented.

Samples were tested for total dissolved solids (TDS), besides calcium, fluoride and nitrate that might come from pesticides or fertilizers.

While the permissible level for TDS was 200 milligrams/litre (mg/l), many wards had as high as 9,000 mg/l. The lowest level recorded was 24 mg/l.

The permissible upper limit for fluoride in drinking water was 1.5 mg/litre. Only in 35 wards were fluoride levels under this norm. While in 19 wards the levels were high, three wards were found to have dangerously high levels of fluoride.

To reverse this decline in water quality, the study suggested that Noyyal River should be safeguarded by preventing discharge of industrial effluents and sewage. Further, fresh water sources must also be protected from pollution.

The NGOs were planning further studies on water resources in the district with long-term periodic survey to monitor the water levels across the seasons.

Remote sensing data on wetlands and water resource would also be compiled. Establishing a mechanism comprising NGOs and Government institutions to monitor human-made changes to water sources was also being contemplated.

A video documentary — ‘Save Noyyal’ — was screened and a booklet ‘Noyyal — The lifeline of Coimbatore’ was also released. Prizes were also given to winners of various contests held to mark the World Water Day.

Later, addressing the session, Sanjay Molur, executive director of the Coimbatore-based Zoo Outreach Organisation, said that more than 40 fish species that were endemic to the Western Ghats were facing extinction. The water resources of Coimbatore were home to 40 fish species, which were facing threats from pollution and exploitative fishing practices.

More In: Coimbatore