Bid for desalination plant to resolve water crisis

KOZHIKODE: M K Raghavan MP has submitted a proposal to the Union government to set up a seawater desalination plant in the city as a permanent solution to the ever-increasing water problem in the district. The MP's office informed that he has submitted a proposal to the Prime Minister urging help to ensure availability of fund for the same.

The proposalenvisages a plant similar to the one in Tamil Nadu. The project requires several crores of rupees, which the local government cannot afford.

P S Hariharan, head of Water Quality, Centre for Water Resource Development and Management said people living in the coastal belt of the district have been finding it difficult to get drinking water. "The quality of well water at Bhatt Road, beach side and other areas is not at all good. Setting up a desalination plant will be a relief to people here," he said.

However, Kerala Water Authority officials feel the proposal is financially unviable. KWA need only under five paise to produce one litre water, whereas it would require around 50 paise to treat a litre of saline water using a reverse osmosis plant, which would be used to desalinate sea water, said a senior official of KWA on condition of anonymity. " The plant is practical only in places where potable water is not available," the official said.