Water Journal : Water Journal September 2011
awa news regular features 40 SEPTEMBER 2011 water Challenges in Supplying Safe Drinking Water to Nagpur In many developing countries water quality objectives are lost when confronted with water availability issues. While there is a push to increase access to drinking water in urban areas of India, often water quality supplied to the end users remains poor due to recontamination during distribution of the treated water. Intermittent water supply combined with higher unaccounted for water (leakage) is a major contributing factor to recontamination. The City of Nagpur is situated near the geographical centre of India in the State of Maharashtra and the NMC provides water and sewerage services to 2.5 million people. The pilot water supply area selected for the WSP implementation is scheduled to receive a reticulated 24/7 water supply by 2013. The NMC intends to use the WSP for a paradigm shift from quantity to quality and prioritise improvements based on risk to public health and secure capital investments through private-public partnerships. The strong commitment shown from the Mayor of the City Council through to the water supply operator was a key factor in WHO choosing Nagpur City to implement a model WSP for India. WSP implementation in Nagpur is facilitated by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI). Catchment management is a major challenge in WSP implementation in Nagpur, because currently there are very few or no catchment management controls in place. Uncontrolled access leads to cattle roaming in some catchments almost on a daily basis. Also, the potential for contamination from sewage and waste from human settlements within some catchments is high. The need for a well constituted stakeholder communication program and a catchment management strategy were identified as key control measures during the workshop. Water treatment plants in Nagpur are managed by private operators and these appear to be satisfactorily operated and maintained to produce water meeting water quality standards. However, recontamination of treated water in the distribution system and at consumers' premises is a common occurrence. The lack of storage tank maintenance in the distribution system also leads to recontamination. Non-revenue water is around 60%. Leaking water mains are a perfect avenue for contaminants to enter water mains during low or no pressure periods. Poor water storage and collection practices at consumer premises reintroduce contamination from leaking sewers and surrounding ground at the point of use. This is prevalent in slum dwellings where illegal connections are common. Illegal connections bring in an additional risk of backflow and backflow prevention is almost non-existent in NMC. Completion of hazard identification was a key outcome of the workshop. Applying the knowledge gathered in the workshop, the NMC will complete the WSP in the coming months with assistance from NEERI. Focus of the WSP implementation will then shift to prioritisation of improvement projects identified in the WSP such as catchment management, treatment plant upgrades, leakage reduction, water mains replacement and introducing continuous (24/7) supply. These improvements will require substantial investment and inevitably take several years to implement. WHO will provide further assistance to monitor the effectiveness of the WSP implementation in coming years. If you have any queries about the WASH Specialist Network, please contact email@example.com or visit the webpage at www.awa.asn.au/WASH.aspx Easier Access to Trade Waste Training Trade Waste Management [Source Management] is the management of industrial and commercial wastewater entering the sewerage system. The management of wastewater is a complex and critically important task for the long-term management of a water utility's assets, sewer worker health, biosolids, recycled water quality and the ecological health of receiving waters in the environment. Trade waste became a part of the overall management of our sewer systems in the late 1980s, when commercial and industrial users in the sewer networks were asked to take responsibility for the management of the wastewater discharged from their premises. This was the point at which the occupation of Trade Waste Officer was born. During the recent period of low rainfall, a greater focus was directed at what is being discharged into the sewer system. As commercial and industrial activities became more water efficient, the concentration of pollutants increased and the sewerage in the system became a source of recycled water for innovative systems such as sewer mining. It became more important for urban water utilities to manage the sources of pollutants being discharged and this forced them to look at their business from a holistic perspective. This included not only the business activities, but the entire sewer catchment. Trade Waste Officers have had few training options in the past and mostly training has been done on the job. In many cases, trade waste has not been their only task, particularly in regional and remote water utilities in Australia. More than 10 years ago, the need for training was identified by practitioners in the Australian Water Association (AWA) Specialist Network on trade waste, which led the way towards the development of an appropriate and nationally supported course on trade waste. Over the past three years, the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) has been working with Government Skills Australia, the industry skills council responsible for the qualification framework for water, to develop the nationally recognised qualification NWP 40107 Certificate IV in Water Operations (Trade Waste). The qualification has been structured to ensure it meets the needs of those working in a trade waste context, and this course is recognised by Australia's largest water utilities as a key requirement for those working in the trade waste field. It will support the work of supervisors and technical experts responsible for the management and A water collection pit (and the only drinking water tap) next to the sewer manhole at the front of a slum dwelling.
Water Journal November 2011
Water Journal August 2011