The global water crisis has been a longstanding issue characterized by inadequate water resources, contamination, and the presence of harmful chemicals like arsenic and fluoride. Insufficient management of water resources, particularly concerning urban, industrial, and agricultural wastewater, further exacerbates the problem, leading to reduced access to clean water for countless individuals.
Inauguration of the Aquifer Storage and Recovery Structure constructed by Manav Rachna in the presence of DC Faridabad
Nations all across the world are stepping up and working towards monitoring groundwater restoration, raising awareness, and developing alternatives for handling water issues.
The Centre for Advanced Water Technology & Management (CAWTM) at Manav Rachna International Institute of Research and Studies is committed to promoting awareness and triggering action on critical water issues at all levels, including the highest decision-making level, to facilitate the efficient conservation, protection, development, planning, management and use of water in all its dimensions on an environmentally sustainable basis for the benefit of all life on earth.
Established in 2017, the centre acts as a multi domain water-environment research centre, set up with an objective to aid sustainable management of water resources and collateral environmental benefits, effectively through innovation, capacity building and providing science-based solutions.
Revolutionary Approaches to Addressing Key Challenges in Faridabad Smart City
Urbanization-induced rapid population growth and associated groundwater depletion have been impacting Faridabad for the last 3-4 decades. There is a gradual increase in urban flash flood-related water logging in different parts of the city. A smart solution to address these two critical issues of Faridabad Smart City (FSC) has been proposed under a DST-funded research project implemented by CAWTM, MRIIRS. CAWTM has produced an alternative design by modifying the commonly used rooftop rainwater harvesting and artificial groundwater recharge system (RTRWHS) and has come out with a more effective and efficient Aquifer Storage and Recovery System (ASRS) to address two eco-sensitive issues of the urban environment.
The project has been titled: Co-solving Water Logging and Groundwater Depletion Issues in parts of Faridabad Smart City
Each system is designed to absorb a maximum of 2000 m3/day of water. The system collects water first in a de-siltation chamber having a baffle wall to reduce silt load and provide laminar flow transfers to the coagulation chamber by gravity for pretreatment of stormwater to reduce suspended particles, the water moves further to filtration cum recharge well by gravity flow. The silt-free stormwater enters to recharge well and transfers to the vadose zone just above the water table by passing a large dry zone to release water through a slotted casing. The water moves to the aquifer travelling through a small part of the vadose zone. It provides a faster absorption rate and safer discharge of rainwater to the aquifer to co-solve two critical water issues in a gainful manner.
The structures have been constructed on the land of PWD and will be handed over to PWD after the completion of the project for further maintenance. Faridabad Smart City Limited (FSCL) has helped to obtain NOC for the construction of structures in PWD premises. The success of the project can be scaled up within the smart city area of Faridabad and other similar situations.
The center is actively engaged in multiple sponsored projects aimed at enhancing the water situation across various regions of the country.
World Bank and Government of India funded project: The center has partnered as the District Implementation Partner for the Atal Bhujal Yojana in three prominent districts of Haryana, namely Faridabad, Rewari, and Palwal. This scheme primarily focuses on the sustainable management of groundwater resources, incorporating a community-centric approach.
Department of Science and Technology, GoI funded project: CATWM is currently in the process of constructing four prototype structures using a science-based approach, with a keen focus on monitoring their impact.
Cairn Energy, Vedanta Oil and Gas Limited funded project: Study on the impact of high viscous crude oil extraction on fresh groundwater aquifers in Thar Desert Rajasthan. The study focuses on the behaviour of fresh ground water aquifers, both volumetrically and quality wise in space and time-domain.
Govt. of Haryana funded project: The centre is supporting Haryana Jal Jeevan Mission, Govt of Haryana, through State Implementation Support Agency, on IEC programs.
Govt. of Haryana funded project: The centre is supporting Public Health Engineering Dept. Govt of Haryana on energy audit of PHED wells.
Mines and Industries funded project: NOC works under CGWA Accreditation.
It has also undertaken various projects for conservation and sustainability of groundwater which includes Hydro Geological Survey for Aquifer Monitoring in Barmer Area, Rajasthan (2018-21), Communicating Science through Model Water and Eco-Health Clinic for quality of life, USAID URBAN WASH Innovation Lab, Detailed investigations in Khoh Village for Rainwater Harvesting, ISP system for treating saline Groundwater-Techno-Commercial, and Reconnaissance survey for Water prospect in 10 adopted villages of Maruti-Suzuki Foundation.
The results that these projects have received entitled CAWTM to the accreditation for conducting Impact Assessment Reports without Modeling Studies, Impact Assessment Reports with Modeling Studies, and Hydrogeological Report for Mining Projects, received by Central Ground Water Authority.
The Centre maintains about 40 highly skilled experts in the field units, located in Barmer, Panchkula, Palwal, Rewari and Ballabhgarh.
The Centre was also the only knowledge partner in the first “Water Conclave” organized by Government of Haryana in April 2023. The Centre was actively involved in preparing the recommendations by synthesizing the presentations. A Water Summit: 2023 on the theme “Water Security in India: Challenges & Prospects” was also organized by the centre in February 2023 which was graced by two former Secretaries of MoJS Govt of India, Advisor to the Hon’ble CM Govt of Haryana and Chairperson Haryana Water Resources Authority.
It is quite noteworthy that the centre actively receives support from the Manav Rachna academic and research departments of Civil Engineering, Biotech, Sociology, Computer Science and others as and when required.
The CAWTM is operated under the guidance of an elite advisory body comprising top academics, representatives of research institutes, policy makers and international bodies. The core team is headed by Dr N C Wadhwa, DG, Manav Rachna Educational Institutions; Dr Arunangshu Mukherjee, Director of the Centre and a former Scientist CGWB; Dr Dipankar Saha, Chair Prof.; Dr Sarita Sachdev ED and Dean Research MRIIRS; Dr Nidhi Didwania, Prof Biotechnology; Ms Sheha Rai, Dy Director and Research Associate; Mr Shakir Ali, PhD are working together to bring out the innovative solutions.
The Centre for Advanced Water Technology & Management (CAWTM) at Manav Rachna is playing a significant role in addressing critical water issues through innovative solutions and research projects. With its multidomain approach, CAWTM is committed to promoting sustainable management of water resources and environmental benefits. The centre’s groundbreaking project in Faridabad Smart City demonstrates its ability to tackle urbanization-induced challenges such as groundwater depletion and flash floods effectively.
The centre’s expertise and collaboration with academic and research departments further strengthen its capabilities. Overall, CAWTM’s dedication to water conservation, awareness, and science-based solutions positions it as a crucial organization in tackling the global water crisis and fostering a sustainable future for all.