BMC gets plot for desalination project at Colaba | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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BMC gets plot for desalination project at Colaba

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation first sought permission for the plant from the navy and army in 2007, but was turned down, reports Bhavika Jain.

mumbai Updated: Nov 15, 2009 00:37 IST
Bhavika Jain

The municipality has got clearance for a three-acre plot at Colaba to set up a desalination plant.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) first sought permission for the plant from the navy and army in 2007, but was turned down.

Deputy Municipal Commissioner Pramod Charankar said: “We now have in-principle approval from the Western Command, but nothing can be said till a feasibility study is done.”

The defence land is at the very end of the line of supply of the Malabar Hill reservoir that supplies water to this area, which explains why the area only gets 70 per cent of its requirement of 13 million litres of water daily (MLD).

The proposed plant, with a capacity of 10 MLD, will use a technology called reverse osmosis, a filtration process that uses pressure to force a solution through a membrane, retaining the particles on one side and allowing the pure solution out.

“The proposed site is in a one-km radius from the coast, which makes is very feasible to locate the project here,” said a water department official requesting anonymity.

The project cost is pegged at Rs 125 crore and the feasibility study will be conducted by Safe Water India, a Mumbai-based water solutions firm.

Water thus desalinated will cost BMC Rs 35-40 per 1,000 kilolitres, which is six times more than the current cost — Rs 7.

Areas in Borivli, Kandivli, Versova and Chembur will be surveyed for the feasibility of setting up more such desalination plants.

“There is always a water shortage in these areas, so desalination plants there will be an investment for the future,” said Anil Diggikar, additional municipal commissioner.