IT & GIS systems helping water supply to be managed better

The potential for managing water through IT and GIS mapping is now being exploited worldwide and why India, which is seen as a leader in IT applications, should not be able to adopt this in managing its water networks should be questioned. Suez Environnement describes it as 'Smart Water' and has tied up with GE to develop applications for managing the water flow and the machines involved. Solutions are tailor-made for specific situations.

The other company, Veolia, too has been managing water distribution, supply and billing through IT platforms. A group of Indian journalists, invited by the French government, was witness to a demonstration of how such a system can bring about efficient water management, ensure safety and curtail both wastage and consumption.

Veolia handles distribution across 149 municipalities in the Greater Paris Area which is governed by the Syndicat des Eaux d'lle-de-France (SEDIF), water authority for the region, through a centralized control unit, ServO. The area has a population of 4.3 million and 550,000 consumers. It's mostly river water of uneven quality that is supplied after treatment and then monitored at each level of the supply to the consumer.