Smriti Kak Ramachandran

NEW DELHI: In the New Year, the Capital will get an additional 21 million gallons of water every day. Not enough for the burgeoning city and its growing needs, but not too insignificant to go unnoticed. Two more water recycling plants of the Delhi Jal Board are ready for commissioning.

Like the 15 MGD recycling plant at Hyderpur that was inaugurated in March this year, an 11 MGD plant at Wazirabad and a 10 MDG plant at Bhagirathi are ready for use.

The Jal Board is currently carrying out trial runs at both plants. “Trial runs are carried out for about a month. Thus far everything has been going on smoothly and no problems in the system have been encountered. The plants are functional and the water being generated at both the recycling plants is clean and fit for non-potable use,” says a senior Jal Board official.

The plants are likely to be inaugurated by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, who is also the chairperson of the Delhi Jal Board, in January. With the commissioning of the two plants, Delhi’s total share of water from the recycling plants will rise to 36 MGD.

“The Jal Board expects to add more than 45 MGD of water to the system through the recycling plants where waste water is converted into useable non-potable water. A fourth recycling plant is coming up at Chandrawal and together these plants will help in meeting the city’s demand for non-potable water,” said the Jal Board official.

With the demand for water on the rise and availability of the natural resource on the decline, the Jal Board has initiated a series of steps to conserve water and reduce dependence on groundwater.

“There is only so much (quantum) that we can expect from the other States, the groundwater levels are also rapidly falling -- and this when the demand for water is only going to increase. It is therefore, imperative that we make the most of what we have and learn to conserve. Recycling of water is a major step in its conservation,” the official said.

The Jal Board has already asked hospitals and the hospitality sector to set up recycling units and put their waste water to non-potable uses. “There is no reason why large consumers like hospitals and hotels cannot recycle. We have noticed that a large portion of potable water supplied to these sectors is often put to use for horticulture and cleaning, which is a wrong practice,” the official said.