Rethinking urban water supply management

Conveners: Kangkanika Neog, Programme Associate, CEEW and Ishita Jalan, Research Analyst, CEEW

With increasing demand for water in urban areas, urban centres will see a need to augment their supply sources, as well as manage water demand. Most cities depend on water supply from neighbouring basins, which might be prone to hydrological, social or political disruption, making cities vulnerable to water supply risks. The transaction costs of transporting water and distribution losses run high. Untreated wastewater and poor health of water bodies are also negatively impacting the ecosystem. The impact of such management inefficiencies has led to exploitation of groundwater and dominance of informal water markets to meet a city’s water needs. Therefore, reducing dependence on distant sources by augmenting water supply within its periphery presents a management challenge for urban water utilities. Similarly, managing the demand side of the equation could be critical for developing resilient urban water centres.

In this session, we will discuss