The Centre for Infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and Urban Planning (CiSTUP) of the Indian Institute of Science and Invicus Engineering Company, a Bangalore-based firm, are conducting a study on a pilot project to draw water from Bellandur and Agara lakes to quench the thirst of Bangaloreans.
They are studying how water can be treated and used for drinking and other purposes. They are looking into the pros and cons of using treated water. For this project, residential complexes housing about 1,500 dwellers around lakes have been chosen.
Says Vivek Menon, managing director of Invicus, “If this study proves successful, the State government can save a lot of money, annually spent on lake rejuvenation.” He said that the study is being conducted for the last three months and it is likely to be completed by the end of December. IISc is conducting the study and Invicus is givings its inputs.
Prof T G Sitharam, chairperson of CiSTUP, said, “All lakes in Bangalore are presently getting contaminated because of water stagnation. This water can be utilised for various purposes and the treated water can be sent back to the lakes. So, recycling lake water is the best way to save the stinking lakes.”
He said that once this study is successfully completed, it would be submitted to the government and all stakeholders (like BDA, BBMP and Lake Development Authority) for implementation. This could be a challenge, but alternatives need to be thought of.
Sitharam explained that every year it rains and water fills the lakes, which overflow.
“The government and the stakeholders spend a lot of money on lake revival.
The lakes turn into water tanks and nothing more. If the water is recycled and rainwater harvesting is adequately implemented, many problems can be solved. This can be very useful across the City, especially in areas where there is water scarcity and BWSSB pipelines are not laid.”
According to Invicus, Bellandur lake has a storage capacity of 1.61 million litres per year, while that of Agara lake is 0.14 million litres per year. The inflow of stormwater after treatment into Bellandur lake is 65,52,197 cubic metres and 5,73,317 cubic metres into Agara lake. Invicus has estimated a release of 15,41,903 cubic metres of treated water from both the lakes.
Presently, Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) pumps 1,200 million litres per day (mld) of water, while the demand is 1,576 mld. The State government had allocated Rs 50 crore to Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) for reviving 55 lakes under its purview.
The BBMP further allocated Rs 40 crore last year and Rs 10 crore this year from its funds for lake rejuvenation. The Bangalore Development Authority had estimated an allocation of Rs 50 crore last year and Rs 40 crore this year for lake rejuvenation.