Monday, April 1, 2024

Biome at EMPRI- Unveiling Bengaluru's Water Odyssey: Past, Present and Future

             Environmental Management & Policy Research Institute (EMPRI), with the Ministry of Environment, Government of India, under the Environmental Information, Awareness, Capacity Building and Livelihood Programme (EIACP), organized a Sustainable Lifestyle for Environment workshop from January 11th to January 22, 2024. Various sessions on single-use plastic, e-waste management, sustainable food systems, saving water etc were conducted. Biome team members conducted a workshop on sustainable water management on 18th January and 24th January 2024. The first half was the knowledge session, and the second half was an activity session where participants were asked to present their views on water management at different levels.

Date and Time of the session - 18th January 2024 - 2.30-5 PM, 24th January 2024 - 10.30 AM

Venue - EMPRI (Environmental Management & Policy Research Institute), Bengaluru

Topic of Discussion - ‘Unveiling Bengaluru’s Water Odyssey: Past, Present and Future’

Biome team members - Nikita, Neelima and Apeksha

The Knowledge Session:

The presentation touched upon the history of Bengaluru's water supply, the rainfall pattern, the brief geography of the city and the reasons for its soothing weather.  The session included sustainable water management techniques favorable for Bengaluru like setting up a rainwater harvesting system, effective use of shallow aquifers and various case studies associated with them. It highlighted the ‘Million Wells for Bengaluru’ campaign started by Biome Environmental Trust and empowering the Mannu Vaddar community through the campaign. The session also touched upon the rejuvenation of lakes like Jakkur and green spaces like Cubbon Park within the city. Lastly, speakers stressed upon the effective use of treated wastewater in and around Bengaluru for agriculture and water supply.

The Activity Session:

In this segment, the participants were divided into 6 groups with a group count of 7 and were asked to design a strategy for the problem given. It was an informative session where the groups presented their strategies to address the issues faced by everyone. After this, the floor was thrown open for discussion.

The topics were as follows:

  1.  Curriculum Development: 

Considering the importance of water management education, how would you design a curriculum for school kids or college students to raise awareness about the issues and challenges of managing water? Reflect on key topics, teaching methodologies, and interactive elements that would effectively engage students in understanding the complexities of water management.

Participants’ Response: 

Participants proposed for a holistic educational approach involving theoretical knowledge about aquifers, rainfall patterns and geology followed by practical application of the study through field visits, water quality testing etc. They also stressed on activity-based learning.


2. Individual Actions for Water Conservation: As individuals, our daily choices impact water consumption. Discuss and brainstorm a list of practical and feasible actions that individuals can take to save water and enhance resource management. Consider behavioral changes, lifestyle adjustments, and awareness campaigns that can contribute to a more water-conscious society.

Participants’ response :

Participants stressed the importance of Reduce-Reuse-Recycle at an individual level. It is crucial to be aware of the concepts of invisible water and water literacy for a larger positive impact.

3. City-Level Strategies for Holistic Water Management: 

Exploring water management at a broader scale, what actions and verticals should a city address to holistically manage its water resources? Think about infrastructure, policies, community engagement, and technological innovations that can contribute to sustainable and comprehensive water management practices within an urban context. 

Participants’ response: 


At the city level, participants proposed implementing rainwater water harvesting systems, effective groundwater recharge, proper waste management, and other eco-friendly measures that can contribute to sustainable water management

The city has worked on alternative forms of water management due to its alarming water situation. Multiple regulations have been made to meet the growing water demand and minimize water consumption. Bengaluru has four taps in its mix of water sources: rainwater, piped water, our lakes and groundwater, and treated wastewater. If we manage these efficiently, there is no need for any river diversion. There is enough to go around if only the investments of money, resources and efforts flow to the right places.

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