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SEWAGE – A MAJOR CONCERN FOR THE CITY MARINE ENVIRONMENT

sewage-3Untreated and poorly treated sewage is a growing concern for the health of the region’s coastal and marine environments. We bring to you a report that specifies this specifically for Navi Mumbai after a recent United Nation Report. The United Nations report on marine environment has voiced sewage as one of the tops the areas of concern in the South Asia Seas (SAS) region. The report states that for cities like Mumbai and even Navi Mumbai, rising tide of sewage threatens world’s oceans, endangering human health, wildlife report. The report states that the combination of discharges of raw sewage and untreated industrial waste has caused low to serious degradation of the coastal and marine environments at several locations in the region. Except in a few urban areas, the sewage treatment facilities are inadequate, the reported treatment capacity in Mumbai being just 15 per cent. In Navi Mumbai sources reveal that this is only 5%. The sewage load in the seas of South Asia region has progressively increased during the past decade in the absence of adequate expansion of treatment systems. In a separate estimate 7,000 million l/day of sewage are generated in the coastal areas of all the South Asian countries. In most instances, sewage does not only contain human waste but also various environmentally harmful household compounds. This has been witnesses in the several incidents of dead fishes found in water bodies besides untreated hazardous industrial waste dumped in them. This problem is aggravated by the common practice of discharging untreated or inadequately treated industrial wastewater into the domestic wastewater stream. As a result, most sewers contain a variety of toxic and non-biodegradable substances, making their treatment less effective and more costly. The inadequate number of sewage treatment plants in operation in Navi Mumbai, combined with the poor operating conditions of the existing plants and the practices of discharging mostly untreated wastewater are likely to have an adverse impact on the quality of waters. As a consequence of steadily growing population in Navi Mumbai, the amount of poorly treated or untreated sewage wastewater being discharged into coastal waters is increasing. During the next decade, several of the biggest cities in the SAS Region, including Mumbai, Kolkata, Dakha, Chennai, and Karachi will rank among the largest in the world. This has serious implications for the health of the region’s coastal and marine environments.

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