KOLLAM: A Sewage Treatment Plant is in the offing in the city as the Kollam Corporation is attempting under a KSUDP project

to revive the three-decade-old underground sewer lines in the city. �Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project (KSUDP) funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) is planning to set sewage treatment plants in four cities in the state - Kollam, Thiruvananathpuram, Kochi and Kozhikode. �The revival of 38-km-long sewage network in the city, which has been lying idle, was mooted in this context. �Two mammoth packages have been formulated to revitalise the sewage network which mainly runs through the western side of the city, following which the sewage treatment plant with a capacity of 12 million litres per day will be installed. �The sewer lines were laid in the 1980s covering major pockets of the former Kollam municipality area. A condition assessment study had revealed that about 33 km of the network is still usable.� One of the two packages for the revival of the sewage network worth Rs 36.34 crore was approved by the Corporation Council meeting the previous week. ‘’It includes laying fresh sewage lines at Asramam south zone and building pumping stations. The second package will include the maintenance and minor repairs of the 33km sewer lines,’’ KSUDP project officer B Sulekha told ‘Express’. Where will the Plant Be? While there is no question on the fact that sewage treatment is important for a city like Kollam, a key question is where the plant will be set up. It is an open secret that the location for the plant is identified at Kureepuzha, which already faces the burden of the garbage treatment plant. There is no other option with the Corporation as the slopes of the existing sewage network have been designed with Kureepuzha as the suitable location for plant. The Corporation officials are expected to launch a massive awareness campaign among local people before launching the plant. It has obtained the Coastal Regulatory Zone clearance and environmental clearance from the Pollution Control Board. But it will be tough task to get the ‘clearance’ from the local people, who are obviously skeptical after the garbage treatment plant experience.

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