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Conjunctive Water Management

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TARU Leading Edge
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Conjunctive Water Management (CWM) of local and distant sources is necessary to manage the ever growing crisis of urban water supplies. CWM emphasises understanding the demand and meeting it through a judicious mix of the local as well as distant sources based on quality, availability and cost. The CWM framework, prepared by TARU Leading Edge, further emphasizes demand focused end use of water (low quality water used for low end uses whereas high quality water for high end uses). The population of Indore is about 2.5 million. It gets 90% of its public water supply from surface water and 10% from groundwater. It depends on a distant source, Narmada River, situated 70km away, for its water needs. This leads to high energy costs. Also, high quality water is being used for low end uses. A significant proportion of slums and peri-urban areas are served by groundwater, but the groundwater level has decreased and it is scarce during summer seasons. The main issues faced with groundwater in slums and poor communities are that of availability and quality. Presently, the per capita water is less (~100 lpcd) as compared to national norms (~135 lpcd) (CPHEEO). Recurrent water crises, deteriorating infrastructure, high distributions losses, poor revenues and growing population have all contributed to this. Climate change uncertainties will increase the vulnerability of people in terms of water scarcity. The centralised water supply has been unable to meet demands and local sources have the potential to meet some of the demands to build resilience of communities, especially the poor. The socio-economic situation of the communities as to focus interventions and ensure sustainability.

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