'Reusing, recycling water must to deal with crisis'

'Reusing, recycling water must to deal with crisis'

'Reusing, recycling water must to deal with crisis'

Water woes are back to haunt Bengalureans again this summer, and the worst hit by this impending crisis are sure to be the apartment dwellers.

“People living in apartments usually experience water problems during summer. The situation is particularly grim for those on the City’s outskirts. They just don’t have any access to Cauvery water,” reminds T Rajamani, 46, a bank manager and resident of Electronics City.

Rajamani, who is also secretary of his apartment association, says the inaccessibility of Cauvery connection has forced residents there to depend solely on borewells and the water tankers. Reuse of water has been another option. He informs, “We have started recycling water from the last two years through an in-house mechanism. The recycled water is used for washing and gardening.”

Only a few neighbourhoods in the City’s core areas have been lucky so far. For instance, some old independent houses in the City, are fortunate enough to access even well water. Says, Mythili S of Halasuru, “We have our own well and I have been living in this house for more than 60 years. In all these years, we have not suffered any water problems.”

But experts warn that with groundwater levels depleting and being contaminated with sewage, the City will soon have a major water crisis. “Even those with wells are likely to suffer because the depletion rate is very fast,” says Preeti Jain, who works with a City-based environmental organisation.

She suggests long-term solutions to address the problem. “We have to be cautions when we use water and adopt a ‘reduce, reuse and recycle’ policy. Recycling and reusing water at homes can help us. These measures can be adopted other than rainwater harvesting.”
Priyadarshini M, a student pursuing research in ‘urban cities and water woes’, says that it is not just Bengaluru, most urban settlements and cities are now facing water problems. She blames this on the thriving real estate growth and population explosion. “We have constructed buildings mindlessly without keeping in the mind the basic needs such as water. Many people with homes on the outskirts are forced to shell out huge amounts of money to purchase water. Even borewell water has become contaminated and is rendered unusable,” she points out.

The real estate boom has sparked a multitude of problems, one of which is the encroachment and drying up of lakes, she says. The lakes could have addressed the city’s acute water crisis during summer if they had been left alone and rejuvenated. But now, it is too late, she rues.