Drinking Water System Repair and Training at Pillai Colony, Nagapattinam District, Tamil Nadu

[Posted in June 2012]

Pillai Colony is currently facing severe problems with its water supply because the surrounding sources have become saline. While climate change and water consumption habits are increasing the stress on the available water resources, the AdaptCap project will repair and renovate the existing water infrastructure and set up a water management program.

What is the problem?
Pillai Colony is a small community of 220 inhabitants with hardly any cultivable land at all. Fresh water is scarce and the population has to rely on external piped water supply for all of its drinking water needs as surrounding sources of water have become increasingly scarce or saline. Additional water stress is expected from climate change. Shorter but heavier rainfall periods will further reduce rain water catchment and ground water replenishment. At the same time water demand is projected to increase with climate change. Water treatment is done by chlorination in an existing overhead tank, which is filled once every four days in the dry season. At tap level, a piece of cloth is used as filtration. The whole water infrastructure is currently in a poor condition and urgently requires maintenance. Without this system and the tank, women are forced to walk kilometres every day with heavy water pots to the neighbouring village.

What is the proposed solution?
During community meetings in Pillai Colony villagers discussed the pressing need to solve their freshwater water problems because it is the main challenge they are facing at the moment. Therefore, the AdaptCap project will work with the Panchayat (which has the responsibility to upkeep the clean water distribution system from the regional booster pump station) to renovate Pillai Colony’s piped water infrastructure. The project will assist the Panchayat with checking and repairing the existing water pipes, renovating the taps, tank base, and drainage system around the taps. All taps, which have been clogged and torn off as well as tap bases that have been cracked, will be renovated. The drainage system will also be carefully checked and repaired, if needed. However, training will be required for proper use of the renovated water system and proper maintenance to keep it from deteriorating again. Therefore, AdaptCap will facilitate workshops with 4-6 key persons in order to build capacity on water management and set up a program on regular maintenance of the water supply system in Pillai Colony.

What are the benefits of the measure for the community?
The repair of the drinking water distribution system will strengthen the overall resilience of the water supply system in a changing climate. Pillai Colony strongly depends on their water supply system as there are not sufficient water sources in the village area. Currently, the existing water supply system is poorly maintained and does not fulfil the needs of the local population particularly in the face of additional climate-related water stress. Appropriate knowledge within the population does not exist. With the overall check and the renovation of the existing pipes, taps, the tank base and the drainage system around the taps the community will once again be provided with fresh water. In order to maintain this status in the long run and sustainably adapt to the water conditions under a changing climate in the area, a water management program will institutionalised. This water management group will be able to address the behaviour changes necessary to conserve drinking water and take the political steps to obtain a fair share of water from the Panchayat pumping station among the local population.

Community voices:
Read (in PDF format) what some community members from Nagapattinam District, Tamil Nadu, have to say about AdaptCap Local Adaptation Project.

Project funding:
This pilot project is financed by the AdaptCap project.

Contact information:
Avvai Village Welfare Society (AVVAI)
260, Public Office Road, Velipalayam
611 001, Nagapattinam District, Tamil Nadu, India
E-mail: avvaikk@yahoo.com

GPS coordinates:
11.057273 E, 79.850564 N

Satellite map:

View Pillai Colony in a larger map

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