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Wastewater Treatment in India

H2O Alert! Why India Has to Change the Way it Looks at Water

| Author / Editor: Ahlam Rais / Dominik Stephan

By 2030, water demand in India is expected to grow to 1.5 trillion cubic meter, with supply at about 740 billion cubic meter, leading to a shortage of 50 per cent. In such a scenario, it becomes important for industries to treat this source effectively.
By 2030, water demand in India is expected to grow to 1.5 trillion cubic meter, with supply at about 740 billion cubic meter, leading to a shortage of 50 per cent. In such a scenario, it becomes important for industries to treat this source effectively. (Source: thinkstockphotos.in)

The Indian raw and wastewater market is estimated to be around `2,000 crore (about US $ 300 mio) and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 12 per cent during 2016–2021. In this background, we interacted with a few industry players and experts from the sector to more about the latest trends, business opportunities and technologies in the wastewater treatment sector…

Water, water, nowhere! We are living in a world that shows little respect to the mighty forces of Mother Nature, water being one of them. The Indus Water Treaty and the Cauvery water dispute are some of the recent examples that show how lack of water access can create serious implications.

A recent report by India Brand Equity Fund states that by the year 2030, water demand is expected to grow to 1.5 trillion m3, with supply at about 740 billion m3, leading to a whopping 50 per cent shortage in India. In such a scenario, it becomes all the more important for industries to manage, treat and re-use this precious source effectively.

Vice President – Works, JK Tyre & Industries Ltd, Umesh K Shenoy elaborates, “Water and wastewater treatment has been a neglected area in India because there is a notion that water is available in plenty. However, over a period of time, shortage in rainfall and restrictions from statutory authorities has now compelled industrialists to think that it is a scarce resource and has to be treated and recycled.”

Seconding Shenoy, Secretary, MaharashtraWater Resources Regulatory Authority, Dr. Suresh A Kulkarni adds, “We are encouraging industrialists to treat the wastewater and are also providing them with pricing discounts. But it is not sufficient and the present penalty in the current scenario is also not adequate. We need to do something more than this.”

Technology to Take Water Treatment to The Next Level

On the other hand, market leaders that provide technologies to the wastewater treatment industry see the sector developing rapidly. As Vice Chairman, C.R.I. Group, G Soundararajan opines, “The Indian raw and wastewater market is estimated around `2,000 crore and the Indian wastewater market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 12 per cent during 2016–2021.”

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Taking this view forward, Deputy General Manager, Marcom, Endress+Hauser (India) , Poonam Poladia says, “Overall, the Indian market for wastewater treatment is growing phenomenally as the current fresh water capacity is not sufficient to sustain the industry.”

This holds true as experts claim that in India, wastewater treatment in the industrial sector has almost matured as about 50 per cent of the industries have already implemented a certain amount of technology to treat and re-use the wastewater.

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