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Water Conservation

'We improve life through natural resources'

Issue Date: Sep 30, 2009
On your inspiration I studied engineering, but was convinced I was not meant for it. During my stint with Ford Foundation, I worked with a doctor couple from Johns Hopkins University, USA. They were training rural women in Maharashtra as community health workers. I realized that is exactly what I wanted to do. On PRADAN I conceived of the organization, but Vijay Mahajan, the co-founder of PRADAN, was instrumental in giving it shape. PRADAN works in seven states,

Single drops of water make the mighty economy

Issue Date: Sep 30, 2009
The 2009 Southwest monsoon has finally arrived in many parts of the country--with a vengeance in several places--leading to flash floods and loss of lives. With images of rain and news of reservoirs getting filled up pouring down TV sets, our macro-economists are seemingly clueless about the damage the delayed and deficient monsoon will cause. Agriculture plays a marginal role in the nation's gdp numbers and so, even if the crops fail, it will not make a dent in the growth rate, they say. Then the stock market is going up, all growth fundamentals are sound.

Toilet training

Author(s): Bharat Lal Seth
Issue Date: Sep 15, 2009

Desperate for rains

Issue Date: Aug 15, 2009
Mumbai municipality to induce rains; activists call it a sham torrential rains pounded Mumbai in the last week of June, but failed to help the city tide over the severe water shortage. The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai is now making frantic efforts to ease the crisis. On July 15, its standing committee decided to induce artificial rains through cloud seeding. As per plan, cloud seeding will be carried out in two phases. In the first phase starting end of July, silver iodide will be burnt in the open air so that

Rain or no rain

Issue Date: Aug 15, 2009
Last fortnight a dominant image on TV screens was drought. This fortnight, vast parts of the country drowned in water. An uncertain, unpredictable and variable monsoon is still impacting us. Late rain has delayed or jeopardized sowing; or intense rain has thrown life asunder and flowed away rapidly, creating months of (future) scarcity. Regional variations are huge, too. So there is drought in otherwise moist northeast and in paddy-growing Punjab and Haryana. A different monsoon, perhaps signalling the climate-changing times ahead.

India needs land for water...

Issue Date: Jul 15, 2009
To deal with scarcity, with climate change, with pollution--and to survive it has been an eventful fortnight for those who know India cannot take water for granted. Cyclone Aila's severe destruction in the Sunderbans is sending thousands of refugees into Kolkata. For all its severity, this merely a glimpse of what a rising sea level could do to the delta. India's negotiators at climate talks ought to remind themselves--and the rest of the world--of that.

Water wise

Issue Date: Jul 15, 2009
A self sustained housing society, undaunted by water scarcity Come summer, several posh housing societies along Bengaluru's Sarjapur Road have to wait for private water tankers. Thousands of luxury

The future's Orange

Author(s): Bharat Lal Seth
Issue Date: Jun 30, 2009
Australian city taps drain water, supplies to households On April 23, Orange city in Australia crossed a major milestone. The city, 260 km west of Sydney, became the first in the country to commission a stormwater harvesting system that uses rainwater runoff to augment its drinking water supply.

Rich waste water

Author(s): Bharat Lal Seth
Issue Date: Jun 15, 2009
Adelaide's wealthy don't mind paying fines people living in Adelaide's wealthiest suburbs top the list of those flouting water use restrictions in South Australia (SA). Violators are prepared to risk fines imposed by water conservation officers deployed to check water abuse. The number of violators rose from seven in 2006-07 to 220 in 2008-09.

People do pay for latrines

Issue Date: May 31, 2009
Four decades ago, when Bindeshwar Pathak began his work on changing unsanitary latrine practices, there were sceptics galore. Today, Pathak's organization Sulabh International is a brand name. The recipient of the 2009 Stockholm Water Prize talks to Bharat Lal Seth on his organization's work ethics. Excerpts: On Sulabh's success story
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