GBF 2015 Theme: Water for Health and Development
In an era being driven by the threesome of environment, health and material needs, reformulating the human-ecosystem equation is a precondition for sustainability. Human needs in India, among other drivers, have grown on account of changing lifestyles from rapid industrialization coupled with urbanization. India’s developing economy and mismanaged natural resources have already pushed us to face the environmental havoc with attendant health and poverty-related issues. Are we going to leave periodic droughts and floods, toxic rivers, polluted water bodies, natural and storm water drains carrying sewages, industrial effluents, garbage, plastics, oily residues and sludges? The “climate change”is no more a scientific debate or far cry. It is a reality today!
Keeping in view the deteriorating scenario, which presents opportunities to intervene by the scientific and technological community and entrepreneurs, we sought ideas and capabilities from the IIT Bombay alumni and current young researchers being shaped by the faculty. Accordingly, the SIG on “Environment” has deliberately chosen to work on the theme of “Water for Heath and Development” so that the science and technology based interventions can be in fact implemented in India. It is hoped that the leading consultants, industry, project implementation agencies, governmental agencies as well as urban local bodies (ULBs) can be mutually benefited by partnering with the IIT Bombay community in the GBF and later in the long journey to success.
Efforts shall be made to showcase success stories, case studies, demonstration efforts and business ideas related to technologies for achieving zero-liquid discharge (ZLD) through water recycling and reuse, minimization of carbon footprints, environment friendly eco-centric technologies for treatment of sewages, industrial effluents and treatment of surface runoff and replenishment of groundwater, application of small hydro-turbines and ways of addressing energy-environment related challenges of the 21st century in an integrated manner.
As all other activities like smart cities, make in India, ICT, training and skills, energy etc. have intimate relationship with eco-system and consumption of natural resources; they undoubtedlyimpact our environment in general and water resources in particular. Socially innovative means to engage citizens to relate and care for their eco-system is important and needs wider supportfrom community, government and industry. Lifestyle changes need to be propagated too in order to reduce emissions in water as well as in air. Therefore, we are also hoping to address some of the critical “overarching issues” in the conference such as biodiversity conservation, protection of livelihoods, promotion of gender equity and catalyzing the “low-carbon” economy.
We also plan to make efforts to organize a “round table” of the IIT Bombay community (alumni + researchers + faculty) with the industry leaders, government leaders and bureaucrats and hope to set-up a policy desk with works in driving policy towards these objectives.
Weare proposing to addressa variety of areas including:
- Rejuvenation of rivers and lakes by interception, diversion and treatment of sewages and industrial effluents affecting them through technological interventions
- Purification of water supplies to our cities and rural areas by application of modern and appropriate technologies to remove pathogenic micro-organisms, toxins, persistent organic pollutants and micro-pollutants
- Enhancement of adaptability to threats of “Climate Change” through providing leadership, technology and management framework for on-going efforts of the Central and State Governments in urban renewal, smart cities and green buildings
- Development and application of “sunrise technologies” for helping modernization and transitioning to sustainable futures
- Implementation of the S&T-based innovative “Planning & Governance Framework” with the help of tools like GIS, IT, monitoring instrumentation and automation