Mitigating water problem

In Kathmandu Valley, water problem is becoming more serious this year than in the past. Consumers have become tired of complaining about this problem to the concerned authorities because they have not been able to solve this problem till now.

In fact, Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited (KUKL) is the only semi-government agency that supplies drinking water to the inhabitants of Kathmandu Valley. According to an official estimate, the daily demand for drinking water in the valley is 370 million litres, but the KUKL has been able to supply only about 110 million litres of water per day. This shows that there is a wide gap between the supply and demand of drinking water here.

According to an official source, the KUKL collects 65 per cent of water from surface source and the remaining 35 per cent from groundwater source. Due to the influx of people from different parts of the county and abroad as well, the problem of drinking water is increasing here day by day. This is why most households have to rely on unreliable drinking water from private suppliers to meet their water needs.

The people of Kathmandu Valley have been waiting for years to use water from the Melamchi River, which is the only reliable perennial water source.

However, it is still uncertain when water from this source will be made available due to the government’s inactivity and negligence.

Since there is adequate rainfall in Kathmandu Valley during the rainy season, storing rainwater can greatly contribute to increasing water supply here.

Collecting rainwater at appropriate places will also be helpful in recharging water in the wells, which have been drying up over the years. However, the concerned authorities have not paid attention to this fact yet.

Waste water treatment and disposal systems are undoubtedly expensive, and water is frequently supplied without giving a thought to the disposal of waste water. However, recycled waste water can be a viable and attractive alternative to meeting the growing demand of water in the valley. This fact should be realised by the concerned sectors as soon as possible.

Though there is 30 to 40 per cent leakage of drinking water in Kathmandu Valley every year, the concerned authorities of KUKL have not been able to check it. If the leakage is stopped, the water problem present here can be mitigated to some extent in the future.