March 22, 2007

Rainwater harvest in Mysore

The city corporation commissioner, Mr K N Chandrashekar, has announced that no new building would be given completion report (CR) until it has a rainwater harvest system in place. I remember they brought a regulation in Tamilnadu some years back, making it mandatory for all houses, not just the new ones, to set up rainwater harvest system.

Had this been implemented in letter and spirit cities and municipal towns in Tamilnadu today would have no reason to crib about water shortage. Snag was in implementation. The regulation on rainwater harvest system in Tamilnadu was not backed up with guidelines in respect of design and space specifications for compliance.

This often meant shoddy enforcement by technically uninformed municipal staff that carried out a cursory inspection of houses, in a half-hearted manner. Many houses got through the staff inspection by installing, if at all, a make-shift rainwater collection arrangement for the sake of official records. They all complied with the municipal regulation, but without appreciable exploitation of rainwater resources.

Question is: does our civic body have the clout and determination to secure compliance of municipal rules and regulations? If builders and house-owners fail to comply within a specified period the municipal corporation should have the resources and be empowered to install appropriate rainwater system at the house-owners’ cost. The civic body could seek technical guidance and co-operation in this regard from CART at the National Institute of Engineering, Mysore, and private sector service providers in evolving an operating system for compliance of rainwater harvest requirements.

The municipal commissioner should also consider factoring in following requirements, other than rainwater harvest, right from the stage when builders seek building plan approval from the town planning and civic authorities. It should be made mandatory for builders to have:
1) roof-top solar panels
2) Energy-saving electrical wiring and lighting and other fittings in the common area.
3) Tree-planting in open space
4) Provision for collecting and disposal of recyclable waste.

Read: FAQ on rainwater harvest
Urban model projects

3 comments:

Dr (Lt.Col.) Y.N.I. said...

The entire comment should be copied and pasted to "Letter to the Editor" of all the newspapers carrying the ruling by the Municipal Commissioner.

duraiswami said...

compulsion without compassion is no good. compellers must provide means and guidance to those who are being compelled and to those oldies who are voluntarily willing to cooperate ( even when they are not under any compulsion). this could be done by naming agencies who will do the job 1. easily, clientlfriedly mannar 2. at competitive cost 3. with no big paper work 4. at absolutely no hidden or below the table practices.
durai krishnan

Shankar Sharma said...

Congratulations to GVK. He has raised a vey relevant and urgent issue as far as all urban areas and water scarce rural areas are concerned.
The MCC instead of just issuing such vague statements on the occassion of World Water Day, must be committed to the real cause of effective water management. In addition to implementing GVK's suggestions MCC should also seriously review its own practices and get periodical "water audit" done by a team of competent water specialists and concerned users of water in the city. Such a review should be done atleast once a year to demostrate to the public that water management in the city is best possible and water supplied by MCC in all localities are fit for drinking and adequate.
Without such self commitment MCC cannot hope to enjoy the trust of its citizens.