The near Rs 3-trillion opportunity in sewage treatment plants (STPs) in India is set to get a big boost. The long pending Mumbai Sewage Disposal Project-II (MSDP-II), comprising six projects, is likely to be opened up for bidders in the first week of January by Brihan Mumbai Corporation. “The decision for bids were firmed up after the government finalised the norms and deliverables for the projects last month. We plan to invite the bids for six projects by the first week of January, while the seventh project in Malad has not received the forest clearance yet,” Sanjay Mukherjee, additional commissioner (Projects) at Brihan Mumbai Corporation told FE. He added that the sewage treatment plants to be set up at Worli, Bandra, Dharavi, Bhandup, Ghatkopar and Versova will have a peak flow capacity of around 2,800 million litres per day. MSDP-II included construction of seven sewage treatment plants (STPs) in the city. While six have got environment clearances, Malad STP was rejected by the centre’s expert appraisal committee early last year because the project was in CRZ I, a zone category in which no construction is allowed. “The plants will have additional capacity to generate 1700-1800 litres of tertiary water for non-potable purposes, which can be used by industries. But we need to convince industrial players of its usability as people are still apprehensive about using treated water,” Mukherjee said.
The key players eyeing projects in the water treatment segment in India include VA Tech Wabag, Larsen & Toubro, Ion Exchange, Veolia-Doshion and Concorde, and most of them are expected to bid for these projects.
Ajay Popat, president, Ion Exchange, told FE that the initiative will help prevent disposal of sewage into the sea, besides creating potential to meet the industrial demand, if the water can be treated at the tertiary level. “We have already set up a 117 MLD plant in Nashik and a 30 MLD plant in Anjar, apart from others across India, and we plan to participate in the forthcoming tenders,” Popat said.
The World Bank-funded MSDP II is expected to be built at a cost of Rs 4,500 crore and would treat waste-water from a 5,483-hectare area across six civic wards, serving up to 35 lakh people. According to a report by India Nivesh on Water Sector, urban India generates around 59,975 million litres of sewage per day, while only 18,543 million litres gets treated by around 791 STPs.