Save Unpolluted Cooum
Health & Hygiene
06 Oct 2014
Vanakkam Chennai, as you all think, Cooum is not a completely Polluted River, a large part of it is still Unpolluted, this page emphasizes the need to save the Unpolluted part of the Cooum even before planning to spend Crores of Rupees on restoring the polluted part of the River. We should give our children what our previous generations gave us, not the dirty river and polluted air….Please join hands.....this is a bit lengthy, but all Chennaiaites should know the truth and do something for our City, make Cooum our Pride....
Being one of the two urban rivers that flow into Chennai, Cooum starts from a village named Cooum, 70 kms from the Chennai city in Tiruvallur district. Only 25 KM stretch is currently polluted by Sewerage disposal. The other 45 KM stretch is still used for drinking water and irrigation needs of the villages in Thiruvallur District.
Cooum, like all the rivers, being one of the greatest boons for the humankind, was made into a “Curse of Chennai” over the years due to Sewerage disposal. With 25 km of Cooum already polluted and the Government of Tamilnadu planning to spend 3833.62 crore rupees in the next five years (2014-2019) to restore the polluted part of Cooum, it is also the responsibility of the “Government of Tamilnadu” to safeguard the “Unpolluted part of Cooum”. We believe that it is wise to save the river before it getting polluted because the cost of restoration is exorbitant.
We have been trying to restore the polluted part of Cooum since 1872 (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooum_River), but even after 140 years, and a huge amount of money already spent, we are still unsuccessful in restoring the polluted Cooum.
Why do we need the river?
1. Every year, during the rainy season, we see the Cooum River draining huge amount of water into the “Bay of Bengal”.
2. As the water follows in the river, it percolates into the sand beds of the river and rejuvenates the underground water levels.
3. There are more than 30 lakes(ex: Soranchery Lake, Thiruninravur Lake, Chekkadu Lake) all in 2 to 4 KM vicinity from the river. Most of the Lakes are connected to the Cooum river through canals, we could restore the canals and the lakes and save the flood water into all the 30 lakes to fulfill the growing drinking water need of Greater Chennai.
4. As we all are aware, the river is the best place to do the “Rain water harvesting”, it has a lot of sand reserve, and could rejuvenate the underground water to many kilometers from the river bed. And, most importantly inside Chennai. The “Government of Tamil Nadu”, “Chennai Metro Water”,”The Public Works Department”, “Government of Tamilnadu – Department of Environment, responsible for implementation of the “National River Conservation Plan””, “Chennai River Restoration Trust”, “Chennai and Thiruvallur District Administration” is responsible to restore the Cooum for Drinking water storage and Rain water harvesting. Here, we mean the “Unpolluted Cooum”
5. We could also build Check dams across the unpolluted part of the river at every 500 meters to save the flood water. There is one already built across the Cooum river at Paruthipattu, near Avadi, by the Public Works Department.
That being said, we truly believe that saving the river before it gets polluted is the best way to protect the river for the drinking water needs of “Greater Chennai”, we can’t always expect the drinking water to arrive from the Krishna Rive, 406 KM away and Veeranam Lake, 235 KM away from Chennai.
We have seen the Krishna River and Veeranam lake drying up and not being able to source water for Chennai. Hence, it is always better to keep our own rivers and lakes as a drinking water source.
There are approximately 337 sewerage outlets into the Polluted part of the Cooum River, mostly executed by the Chennai Metro water. The river mouth near the Napier Bridge gets blocked most of the times, preventing the river water from draining into the Bay of Bengal, hence the sewerage disposed into the river stays in the river and makes it a Stinking cesspool. And, this is the reason for the increasing Mosquito menace in the Chennai City.
The Chennai Metro Water now plans to increase the polluted area of Cooum by letting more sewerage outlet into the unpolluted part of the river.
The Avadi and Thirumazhisai Municipality’s Underground Sewerage water is planned to be disposed in the Cooum River near Paruthipattu and Anaikattuchery respectively. This plan will pollute another 10 KMs of the Cooum River.
The Chennai Metro Water claims that it treats the sewerage water before letting it into the River, but, the treated Sewerage water can never be a drinking water.
Our Question to the Authorities:
If we can build the Underground Sewerage system in Chennai for thousands of kilometers in all the interior roads of Chennai, Why can’t the Outlet Pipe be directly let into the Sea, Even for places like Nungambakkam where the Sea is at 3 to 4 KMs, the sewerage is let into the Cooum, Why?
If we can bring water from Krishna River through Canal that runs 406 KMs and from Veeranam lake through pipe line that runs 235 KMs, why can’t we build such a system in Chennai to let the Sewerage through pipes directly into the Sea? Why Cooum?
The “Government of Tamilnadu”’s plan to spend 3833.62 crores to restore the Cooum River, and the plan is to treat the raw sewerage that is currently being let into the river and again let it into the Cooum, our question is why can’t we build a pipe line for the 25 KM stretch of the Polluted Cooum and let the sewerage water into the Sea? Will it not help the restoration process and curtail the Mosquito Menace? (Chennai Corporation spends approximately 200 crores towards Mosquito Menace every year)
What Should we do?
Firstly, like the page and show your solidarity towards “Saving the Unpolluted Part of Cooum”.
Secondly, share this with as many people as possible to press for a “Greener Chennai” and “Cleaner Rivers”.
If possible write to the Authorities responsible to “Save the Unpolluted part of Cooum” or any other River of India, before they plan to spend crores of Rupees on restoring the polluted Rivers and Lakes….Stay Connected….
We should ask the authorities to identify and lay a boundary between Polluted Cooum and Unpolluted Cooum. We believe that the “Paruthipattu Check Dam” near Thiruverkadu is one such strategic Location as of 2014. We should then stop any attempt to pollute the unpolluted part of the river….
Please “Join Hands” this noble cause that could help us get good water for few more generations….
We should ask the authorities to identify and lay a boundary between Polluted Cooum and Unpolluted Cooum. We should then stop any attempt to pollute the unpolluted part of the river….
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