CHENNAI: With an eye to protect groundwater sources, the Sipcot Industries in collaboration with IIT-Madras and Metro Water is putting up a water sustainability plan for 15 years. This after officials shut down all borewells in Sipcot’s Sriperumbudur branch three weeks ago. Sixty-odd companies in the layout were asked to primarily use only treated water sent from Metro Water’s TTRO plant at Koyambedu. But, as many companies depend on bore water for sanitation and sometimes even as raw material, they are finding it hard to adapt to the change.
The main aim of this project is to first optimise rain water harvesting capability of the 2000-acre industrial park.”We want to use all resources including surface, ground and run-off water. We want to first make Sipcot water neutral and slowly into a water positive entity. We have spoken to three parks out of 25 industrial parks coming under Sipcot and received positive response,” said L Padmanaban, chief executive officer of CUBE, a research organisation under IIT-M which is overseeing this project.
“For three weeks, we have been buying water from private tankers. People are not willing to use treated sewage to wash their hands and face. The borewell water is saline too. That is why we approached experts for a sustainable water plan,” said P B Ravikumar, president of manufacturers association of Sipcot Pillaipakkam industrial estate.
From the first week of October, around 13 MLD of treated water was sent to the estate from the 45 MLD TTRO plant. Initially, nearly 40 MLD of fresh water from reservoirs was sent to industries in North and South Chennai. Around 10 per cent of companies need fresh water to use as raw material. Moreover, if the government wants all industries to use only treated water they need ample time to build the infrastructure to transport the water inside, manufacturers said. Last week, at a meeting with all stakeholders, it was decided that a four-part sustainable water project be started soon for Sipcot.