Thursday, February 28, 2013

Water Walk on 2nd March 2013

Water Walk on 2nd March at the Rainwater Park as part of the "Catch Every Drop"

What's happening?A talk about where we in this city get our water from, where we let it go, why we need to save water, 26 different rain water harvesting installations (did you know there were that many!?) a guided tour through the park and its various water solutions.

So where is this?Come to Visweswaraya Rain Water Park, Bangalore Water Supply & Sewerage Board Jayanagar 5th Block, 8th Main, 40th Cross, Bangalore - 560 041.Directions to the Rain Water Harvesting Park.

This tour is a part of Catch Every Drop, a campaign on sustainable water conservation by The Alternative, supported by Arghyam, with partners India Water Portal and Biome Environmental Solutions.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Rainwater harvesting in a Software Firm

A software firm located in the outskirts of Bangalore has been facing perpetual water shortage issues. It depends on external tanker supply and its campus borewells. With a population of 8000, it has  a daily water demand of around 200 KL. Adopting a proactive approach towards securing its water supply, the company management started exploring rainwater harvesting measures and engaged in a discussion with Biome.
With abundant rooftop area (~120000 sq ft), it was only natural to tap this runoff and store it in the sump which has a capacity of 200 KL.
Also, there is sufficient landscaped area and a well designed network of storm water drains. So recharging the ground water table was also considered, rather than letting the storm water drain into the sewage laden Vrishabavathi that cuts across the campus.

View of the campus

It was decided to execute the project in phases and therefore a part of the rooftop was considered for the pilot phase. First rain separators and Rainy FL-500 filters provided the job of physical filtration before sending the water to the sump. The water from the raw water sump passes through a treatment system comprising of a Pressure Sand Filter and a Chlorine doser. With this system, there is a potential to harvest around 973 Kl considering a normal rainfall year.

FL-500 Rainy Filter
Five recharge wells of dimension (4 ft dia and 20 ft deep) were dug at points observed to get maximum storm water runoff. The substrate was pretty rocky beyond 18 feet in the case of a couple of wells. Basic filtration is done with the help of concrete jallis and boulders positioned just before the recharge wells.

Recharge well

Channel for laying pipe to recharge well
The next phase will focus on tapping the remaining roof top area and adding more recharge wells based on the percolation rates observed in the current recharge wells.

Though the management had initial apprehension regarding the impact on aesthetics due to the RWH system, all fears were put to rest after the implementation and they are keen to get going with the next phase design and implementation.
Definitely a model worth emulating by other organizations.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Kids and Water Management in an Apartment

Brigade Gardenia organized a "Water Workshop" for the kids (primarily) and everybody else in the apartment to sensitize them to the water sources, water consumption and waste water treatment and reuse in the apartment. It was an interactive session which started with some reading from a very beautiful story " House of Sun and Moon - A Story from Nigeria" by one of the little girls in the apartment. This was followed up with some very good discussions and ideas from the children on what they could do going ahead to be more conscious and responsible with their water usage. Subsequently on Republic Day a stall was put up by the residents to disseminate information on water conservation .
Story reading by a little girl
The Water Kiosk on Republic Day

Biome and kids interaction
The audience

The poster inviting all
The Water Information center

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Water and First year MBBS students

St Johns College, Bangalore has a relatively new department "Health and Humanities", which introduces the students  to music, art, literature, ecology, history, spirituality etc from the point of view of the health of an individual. The attempt is to get the young doctors-to-be to see all aspects of health - going beyond the traditional form of medical education including diagnoses, surgeries and medication. 

BIOME Trust was invited to take a session on WATER for the first year MBBS students (It was a course on which the students would subsequently be tested and hence not to be taken lightly !) The idea was to sensitize the doctors to the water situation and make them aware of the various sources of water, water quality issues and treatment processes. Sustainable practices like Rainwater harvesting and waste water treatment and reuse were also discussed.

The young doctors were a chirpy and enthusiastic lot and are probably now totally immersed in formal medical education. From our experience we see that hospitals are now taking baby steps to understand and sustainably manage their water use. It will be nice to see at least some of these doctors leading the way in water management at hospitals

Most big cities source water from far away rivers
Not everybody gets water in their taps
The full class

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

RWH tour for students of Golden Valley CoE, Madanapalle

11 final year Civil Engineering students and their guide (an Engineer with the Irrigation department) visited different types of RWH installations today alongwith BIOME as part of their final year project. The trip had a good mix of both theory and site visits. They went to  SISA Kendra, Rainwater Harvesting Theme Park, Rainbow Drive and Sobha Quartz - each presenting a different aspect of RWH to the students.

Some thoughts and information that stayed with us post the visit

  1. The students had collected the daily rainfall data for the past 5 years from the tehsildar's and irrigation dept. offices and were keen to share it with us
  2. They had ideas on how RWH and Waste Water Treatment could be implemented back home. We wait to hear from them
  3. Their guide had been deeply moved by the water episode on "Satyamev Jayatae" and thought it important that something be done about the same. He has been at it and trying out different ideas for the past few months. This RWH tour being one of the attempts too
  4. The willingness, pride and enthusiasm with which, the people that have implemented RWH like to talk about it is also an amazing feeling. A very warm thanks to all the folks at each of the venues that helped us by allowing us to use the facilities at the premises as well as interacted with the students
We should do more of these !!
Theory session at SISA Kendra

At the RWH park

Shobhit explains: Recharge Wells at Rainbow Drive
RWH Theme Park
Sobha Quartz basement
Final Group photo
The customary tea - just before winding up

Monday, February 4, 2013

RWH at SISA Kendra

SISA Kendra, a school in Whitefield implements rooftop rainwater harvesting. Water from about 800sqm of rooftop is stored in a 30,000 liter sump as well used for borewell recharge as part of the implementation. The harvestable potential is about a quarter of a million litres. Great effort, involvement and coordination from the school management, administration and teaching staff. The next step is to try and put in place an appropriate system to treat and reuse waste water.
Testing the bricks 

Excavated sump
Sump walls completed
Vishwanath addresses the audience
RWH system inauguration

A great honour to be invited to their annual day. Mr Reddy inaugurates the system.