The Ganges or Ganga is one of the 10 rivers in the world that is responsible for 90% of the ocean pollution today. This is the same Ganges that is worshipped by a billion Indians and serves as a water supply to over 400 million people.
As of 2020, the river stands severely polluted with an estimated 6.07 Billion liters of domestic and industrial waste being dumped in the Ganges daily.
Over the past 5 years there has been a renewed focus (nationally and internationally) on the Ganges by NGOs, Government of India, citizens of India etc.
But despite increased funding and much coverage, the river is more polluted than before.
Problem We Are Trying to Solve
Due to the strain of a massive population, lack of environmental flows, intensive livestock farming, unscrupulous fertilizer usage across the Indo-Gangetic belt, and highly polluted municipal/industrial effluent streams, the river is in a dismal status.
Several detailed studies indicate that untreated domestic and industrial wastewater into the river via open drains is the main cause for its alarming toxicity. Pollutants include contaminants like fecal coliform, oil and grease, toxic chemicals, heavy metals, dissolved solids etc.
The industrial pollutants largely originate from Tanneries in Kanpur, Paper Mills, Distilleries and Sugar Mills in the Yamuna, Ram, Hindon and Kali river catchments. Then, there is the huge load of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) which contributes 2/3rds of the total pollution load.
The management a basin-wide plan and requires updated knowledge of the Ganges lacks integration
an accessible and sharing platform. Further, the Indo-Gangetic belt faces yet another challenge of upgrading it’s water supply, wastewater treatment infrastructure and of providing clean water supply to all rural households by 2024 under the “Jal Jeevan Mission”- The Water for Every Household Mission.
How We Are Going To Do It
The Ark 2030 mission has created an award winning team of advisors to develop a multi stakeholder strategy to clean up teh River Ganges.
The solution to these long- standing complex issues lies in Mitigation (Technology), Adaptation, education and development
Promotion of decentralized sewage treatment plants and reuse the municipal wastewater treatment plant effluent for irrigation purposes, or cooling towers in power plants, or the hydraulic fracking industry, etc.
Verification of STP efficiency, reliability using latest technology Engaging with stakeholders at various levels to understand the community’s challenges and highlight the opportunity.
Creating an application/tool for transparent monitoring and real time data evaluation.
implementation focused across of education and environment
Setting up regular monitoring and verification of implementations and communicating to all relevant stakeholders.
Providing counsellors and master trainers for capacity building under the topics mentioned
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In terms of human impact it is possibly the single most impactful programme in the world of eco system restoration - literally hundreds of millions of people are directly affected by the state of the River and the environments that it impacts
Long Term Impact
The long term impact of this programme is truly global - serving as a template for the actions to be taken on river systems around the world
What We Need To Do
If we wish to achieve the goals of the action plan 2030, it is clear that capacity building and bridging knowledge gaps coupled with innovative technology is critical to the success of the plan.
Your funding will help to build that capacity, and pilot new strategies in preparation for scaling up the programmes that deliver the greatest impact.