Mumbai Stares At Major Water Crisis As BMC Daily Cleans City Roads With 15.49 Lakh Litres Of Water

Mumbai Stares At Major Water Crisis As BMC Daily Cleans City Roads With 15.49 Lakh Litres Of Water

Mumbai's water supply is predominantly sourced from reservoirs in Nashik district, which are now perilously close to depletion before the arrival of summer.

Prathamesh KharadeUpdated: Friday, February 23, 2024, 01:55 PM IST
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Mumbai Stares At Major Water Crisis As BMC Daily Cleans City Roads With 15.49 Lakh Litres Of Water |

Mumbai: The looming water scarcity in Mumbai has prompted the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to contemplate a 10% water cut starting from March. Ironically, amid these concerns, the city has been expending a staggering 310 lakh litres of water since the start of February solely for the purpose of deep cleaning roads and combating air pollution. This measures to a daily usage of approximately 15.49 lakh litres of water designated for road cleaning alone.

Mumbai's water supply is predominantly sourced from reservoirs in Nashik district, which are now perilously close to depletion before the arrival of summer. The hydraulic department of the BMC is reportedly utilising water from bore wells and sewage treatment plants to cleanse 422 roads spanning about 659.09 km each day. To address dust pollution, 211 tankers and 18 misting machines are deployed, covering an additional 59.5 km of roadways.

Details On Road Cleaning Activity

Initially started as a weekly activity by the Chief Minister Eknath Shinde in early December to curtail dust and enhance overall sanitation, the initiative escalated to a daily task from February. Operating between 6:30 am and 2 pm across 25 wards, this activity yields a collection of 175 tons of dust daily.

Notably, the K west ward in the Andheri-Juhu stretch tops the charts, utilizing 1.20 lakh litres of water for this purpose, closely followed by the K east ward encompassing Andheri east, Jogeshwari east, and Vile Parle east, consuming 1.14 lakh litres.

Water Levels Dangerously Reducing In Reservoirs

As the city braces for another stint of water cuts ahead of the monsoon season, reservoir stocks dipping each day. Despite long-standing plans to address escalating water demands, the BMC has yet to implement viable alternative supply solutions. Ongoing projects aimed at boosting supply are anticipated to take an additional three to four years to materialise.

The city's water situation was worsened last year by the belated arrival and premature departure of the monsoon, resulting in a mere 45% stock across Mumbai's seven supplying lakes, the lowest in two years. To prevent a crisis this summer, the BMC has petitioned the state government for access to reserve stocks from Bhatsa and Upper Vaitarna lakes, alongside proposing a 10% water cut effective next month.

Historically, Mumbai has grappled with severe water crises, enduring cuts ranging from 15% to 30% in 2009, 2014, 2015, 2020, 2022 and 2023, stressing the urgency of sustainable water management practices.

BMC's Plans To Tackle Water Supply Crisis

In a bid to address long-term water woes, the municipality has initiated the construction of a desalination plant at Manori, a venture shelved for 16 years since its inception. This plant, slated to augment supply by 200 million litres per day, is set for completion in four years. Moreover, plans to upgrade sewerage plants hold promise for securing 2,400 million litres of treated water, with intentions to vend non-potable water to factories for secondary uses.

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