Design of a sustainable piped water solution based on Upper Vaitarna Reservoir for providing drinking Water Security to scarcity affected Mokhada Taluka

Design of a sustainable piped water solution based on Upper Vaitarna Reservoir for providing drinking Water Security to scarcity affected Mokhada Taluka

This report demonstrates the feasibility of a surface water based, gravity assisted, energy efficient, and sustainable piped water solution for scarcity affected Mokhada Taluka (block) of Palghar district, Maharashtra. It also demonstrates the use of GIS technology and JalTantra, an in house developed tool for intuitive, efficient design and optimization of pipe water networks.

Rural Drinking Water Department is redesigning the Karegaon scheme as the original source has been submerged in the newly constructed Middle Vaitarna Reservoir. Although a block of 13 tanker fed villages lies in the immediate vicinity of the scheme locality, the geographical coverage of the new design was kept unchanged. A preliminary assessment indicated that a scheme design based on Middle Vaitarna as source was not feasible due to the large elevation difference between the source located at elevation of 285m and the villages in the cluster having average elevation of about 391 m.

However, the higher elevation of Upper Vaitarna (603m) reservoir in the same area offered a critical advantage by leveraging gravity flow of water thereby reducing both the capital cost of piping as well as the energy cost for pumping. The techno economic feasibility study undertaken by CTARA of a multi-village scheme based on Upper Vaitarna reservoir as source and augmenting the scope of Karegaon scheme to include the cluster of 13 tanker fed villages revealed that per capita cost came down to Rs. 2890 as compared to per capita cost of Rs. 5083 for Karegaon scheme being designed by the Rural Water Supply Division. Also, the annual Operation and Maintenance (O&M) cost including energy cost came down from Rs. 24/1000L to Rs. 6.34/1000L.

When this solution was presented to all the stake holders in a Water Conference held in Khodala village in Mokhada taluka in May 2014, there was overwhelming demand from the local people to expand the scope of coverage to remaining scarcity affected villages in the taluka to remove dependency of people of Mokhada taluka on tanker supplied water. Accordingly, a set of 17 villages located in North Mokhada and their habitations along with the block of 13 tanker fed villages in the vicinity of Karegaon scheme were included in the scope of present study.

A step by step design methodology based on protocols followed by Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran (MJP) involving extensive use of GIS tools and hydraulic modelling software JalTantra and EPANET were used for design and optimization of the proposed scheme. The study revealed that the total cost of the proposed solution for a design population of 86000 is merely 35 crores which is less than 2% of the cost of Middle Vaitarna project. The per capita capital cost of the proposed solution is Rs. 4078 as compared to per capita cost of Rs. 5083 for Karegaon scheme while the annual O&M cost including energy cost is Rs. 5.74/1000L as compared to Rs. 24/1000L. Thus, there is still an opportunity for implementing a sustainable drinking water solution for entire Mokhada taluka. In future, by adopting ‘inclusion model’ and giving sustainability of a scheme based on surface water source a prime consideration, there exists a great potential to not only do away with recurring cost of supplying water by tankers, but also to remove the perpetual dependency of large number of rural population on tanker supplied water.

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