Solar-powered Water Supply to Panchayats

Published: 09th November 2015 06:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 09th November 2015 06:29 AM   |  A+A-

BHUBANESWAR: With 285 gram panchayat (GP) headquarters of the State out of reach of pipe water supply scheme, the Government has directed the Rural Development Department to ensure that these panchayats are provided safe drinking water under the solar energy-based dual pump scheme.

As many as 68 panchayat headquarters of Kalahandi district, 26 GPs in Kendrapara, 25 in Angul, 19 in Nuapada, 17 each in Jajpur and Keonjhar and 15 in Sundargarh districts are still not covered under the pipe water supply scheme.

Supply of water through solar photovoltaic (PV) pump sets is the only solution in remote habitations where sinking of bore well or tube well is not feasible. The Centre, which has been providing financial assistance to the State under National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) for installation of such pump sets, has now stopped funding.

While in the first phase, 1,762 villages were covered under the programme in 18 IAP districts, 1,934 habitations were provided safe drinking water through solar PV system in the second phase, said a senior officer of the Rural Development Department.

The Centre had sanctioned funds for 2,000 habitations facing drinking water scarcity in 2014-15, sources said.

These water scarcity habitations have been identified by the RWSS wing of Rural Development Department. Of 6,234 GPs, 845 were having no natural source of water.

Meanwhile, the Department has provided pipe water to  560 habitations by sinking deep bore wells.

The remaining 285 GPs will be covered under pipe water supply scheme through solar PV pump sets. The pump sets will be installed at the place of existing bore wells with provision of overhead tanks, the officer said.

Since development of drinking water supply infrastructure is not feasible in inaccessible areas and places having no natural water sources, the solar-based dual pump pipe water supply scheme is the only viable solution where power supply is highly erratic, said an officer of Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency.

Meanwhile, about 35,000 villages of the State have been covered under pipe water supply schemes.

As ground water in large parts of Nuapada is affected with high fluoride content, the State Government is setting up a mega drinking water project at a cost of `752 crore to address the perennial drinking water problem of the district.


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