Thirsting for power

Thirsting for power

Thirsting for power

aware A R Shivakumar beside a roof integrated solar water heater installed at his residence.

Nature has never been this nasty with Bangaloreans. The City’s legendary water-bodies that have for years together battled with man-made problems, are not good enough anymore. Sweltering summer heat has rendered most of them dry.  

So scarce is water this summer that people living in apartments and on the outskirts of the City have been forced to pay a bomb for water. The frequent power cuts too are rubbing salt on the wounds of the residents.

Almost everyone is looking for a UPS and has drastically cut down on the use of luxury gadgets. Washing machines are turned on twice a week. Microwave ovens, toasters and other such appliances are barely used.

Metrolife interacted with a few families living in the City and asked them how they cope with frequent power cuts and water shortages.

A R Shivakumar’s house in Vijayanagar might be the only house in the City where the owner has made all efforts to conserve water and power. He taps solar energy and uses it to heat water and turn on the lights. Every drop of water is saved through water harvesting measures, “we even use a solar cooker and solar water heater. We don’t need a fan because the trees surrounding the house keeps away all the heat,” he says.

Lalitha’s house is one among the 200 houses in Trinity Enclave on Sarjapur Road but this elite residential area has no BWSSB connection and there’s a power cut every two hours and practically there is only six hours of power per day. The enclave buys 50 tanks of water every day and water supply to all the houses is cut off between 1 pm and 5 pm.
“All this is done to conserve water. I have restricted using the washing machine to twice a week and every house has an inverter which allows the use of one fan and one light,” says Lalitha, a teacher trainer. Thanks to the extensive use of the inverter, Lalitha says that her electricity bill has gone up by Rs 400 as the battery needs to be charged for hours together.

Sarala Harsha, a housewife who lives Koramangala, says the scene is different every week when it comes to water supply and power disruption. “We get water supply every alternate day. There used to be only six hours of power supply but I think the situation has improved a bit. Bangalore is headed in the direction of complete water shortage,” says Sarala. She observes that erratic water and power supplies definitely affect one’s routine. “We’re planning to take to water harvesting pretty soon. That’s the only way to go forward in this City,” she sums up.