Currently, around half of all urban dwellers live in cities and almost 10 percent of urban dwellers live in megacities. As cities around the world experience this exploding growth, the need to ensure they can expand sustainably, operate efficiently and maintain a high quality of life for residents, becomes even greater than it is today. This is where smart cities come into the picture.
The term “smart cities” is trending amongst governments, urban planners and even the private sector to address the projected demands of cities in the future. Making cities smarter to support growth is emerging as a key area of focus for governments and the private sector alike. Smart cities are about to make huge investments to uplift the infrastructure, economy, energy efficiency, and nevertheless environment. Smart cities encompass six important sectors that need to work in unison to achieve a common goal of making a city more livable, sustainable and efficient for its residents. These sectors are smart energy, smart integration, smart public services, smart mobility, smart buildings, and smart water.
One of the most critical factors for the growth and sustenance of a smart city is its water system. With populations in cities growing, it is inevitable that water consumption will grow as well. The term “smart water” points to water and wastewater infrastructure that ensures this precious resource – and the energy used to transport it – is managed effectively. A city’s water distribution and management system must be sound and viable in the long term to maintain its growth and should be equipped with the capacity to be monitored and networked with other critical systems to obtain more sophisticated and granular information on how they are performing and affecting each other. Water loss management becomes highly important as supplies are likely to be stressed by population growth. A medium-sized city with 100 million gallons per day of produced water that loses about 25 percent might incur millions of rupees per year in non-recoverable labor, chemical and energy expenses.
Today, we are entering the era of smart cities, where the city is a hub of innovation, entrepreneurship and technology. It’s paperless, wireless and cashless. It is equally impertinent that we make our Earth and Water resources burden less and persistent. With this background, Centre for Advanced Water Technology & Researchhas been setup at MRIU campus which comprises scientists, technocrats, professionals, academicians, members of RWAs, etc as MRIU consortium. This would focus on all the problems associated with water and its issues and would bring about awareness and solutions in this area.