March 4 (Bloomberg) -- India is able to treat just a fifth of its sewage, fueling domestic conflicts as growing cities battle for water resources, pushing up prices and increasing leaks, Vice President Hamid Ansari said.
“To quench their ever-increasing thirst, India’s expanding cities have started sourcing water from further and further away,” Ansari said today at a conference in New Delhi. “This has pushed up the cost of water, increased leakages to around 40 percent and sparked conflicts.”
Shortages of clean water in India, the second most- populated country after China, have led to agricultural, industrial and domestic clashes with struggles over water supplies expected to escalate, according to a United Nations Children’s Fund report this year. Most cities lack policy on how to remedy the disposal of raw sewage in water bodies, according to a study by the Centre for Science and Environment.
“There is a serious lack of foresight in urban sewage and wastewater management in our country,” Ansari said. “Untreated sewage is killing our water.”
--Editors: Randall Hackley, Tina Davis