In a bid to give impetus to the Sustainable Water Security Mission (SWaSM) that was created to restore waterbodies, Chennai Metrowater is developing an online platform to collate data on lakes and encourage volunteering efforts.
The website will act as a common platform and provide detailed information about each of the 280 waterbodies in and around the city. The Mission will focus more on rejuvenation of small ponds and lakes across the city.
Government agencies such as the Chennai Corporation and the Water Resources Department are working with with voluntary organisations, including Rain Centre and Environmentalist Foundation of India, for the SWaSM formed in 2015 to improve waterbodies and create awareness of greywater recycling.
Details of the lakes and restoration efforts will be updated on the website. It is likely to make it easy for people looking to volunteer for lake restoration projects. They can register online. The online platform will also help monitor the projects.
The SWaSM now plans to take up improvement of ponds and lakes that are of half or one acre in size. As a initial step, the water agency is involved in identifying 10 ponds each in south, central and northern parts of the city. Once the project to improve a particular waterbody, including fencing, desilting and strengthening of bund, is completed, there are plans to involve residents’ welfare associations in maintenance of the waterbodies, officials said.
Nearly 15 pilot projects in places such as educational institutions and government buildings, were executed to harness rainwater and also recycle greywater on the campus. Similar initiatives would be carried out in public spaces such as parks, playgrounds and government buildings.
Residents would be sensitised to the importance of greywater recycling, particularly in multi-storey buildings, through simple methods. Nearly 30 % of the water can be used through recycling greywater, an official said. Metrowater plans to kick-start the project to restore the ponds in a few weeks.