Sustainable Wastewater Management at Aravind Eye Hospital

Sustainable Wastewater Management at Aravind Eye Hospital

Volume 1 Edition 9

by admin on 19-02-2024

In the pursuit of providing low-cost, high-quality eye care to economically disadvantaged individuals across India, Aravind Eye Hospital stands as a beacon of compassion. Beyond its medical mission, the hospital has embarked on a noteworthy environmental initiative, implementing a low-cost, efficient Domestic Wastewater Treatment System (DEWATS) to address the water needs of its residential blocks.

The project aimed to install a DEWATS that could effectively treat domestic wastewater, meeting the stringent standards set by the State Pollution Control Board. The system, commissioned in 2003, comprises a Settler, Anaerobic Baffle Reactor, Anaerobic Filter, Planted Gravel Filter, and Polishing Ponds. By separating black and grey water streams and employing various treatment modules, the hospital successfully achieved the treatment goals, producing water compliant with environmental standards.

With a capacity of 307 KLD (Kiloliters per day) and serving 750 users, the DEWATS at Aravind Eye Hospital stands as a model for sustainable wastewater management. The systems efficiency, at an impressive 95%, ensures the responsible use of resources. The project, funded and implemented by the hospital itself, in collaboration with the Centre for Scientific Research and Pondy Auro Services, highlights the institutions commitment to environmental care.

The DEWATS operation involves low maintenance tasks, such as regular pump operations and plant trimming, coupled with periodic checks of sewer line systems. The electricity costs for operating the system are minimal, with four motors running for eight hours daily. Notably, the hospital reuses treated water for landscaping, and the sludge from the system is transformed into nutrient-rich manure through composting.

Aravind Eye Hospitals DEWATS project exemplifies a successful convergence of healthcare and environmental responsibility. By embracing sustainable wastewater management practices, the hospital not only meets its operational needs but also contributes to the larger goal of preserving and enhancing the environment. This case study stands as an inspiration for healthcare institutions seeking holistic approaches to their impact on both human well-being and the planet.