Application of the City Blueprint Approach in Ahmedabad (India)
Last year Stef Koop and I published a broad review on the challenges of water, waste and climate change in cities. Population growth and urbanization are great challenges in India. This is depicted in Figure 1 of this review. The predicted population growth in this region (India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Maldives) is impressive and will greatly contribute to the already major water challenges: too little, too much, and too polluted water. So, we were really anxious to include cities in India. last year it happened and Martien Aartsen (master student of Utrecht University) applied our City Blueprint Approach in Ahmedabad in India. The results are summarized in this poster.
Mou EU and India Stef was invited to participate in the India-EU Water Partnership (IEWP) conference in New Delhi where he explained the City Blueprint Approach and met the European Commissioner Mr. Vella. The meeting resulted in a Memorandum of Understanding between the Republic of India and the European Union on water cooperation. At the same time Martien Aartsen was involved in the Wetskills Ahmedabad project to apply our City Blueprint Approach
Martien’s impressions: “In hindsight, I couldn’t imagine being able to see so many features of the country as I did in the relatively short period I stayed in India. I was able to speak to many kind government officials across different departments. I spoke to ambitious and concerned NGOs, and I spoke to involved academics. I was even able to join a water walk, organised by ‘concerned’ citizens. During this water walk, we were guided along important water features of Ahmedabad like the the Vasna Barrage, a Wastewater Treatment Plant, and a place where treated wastewater is discharged into the river outlets. Next to my research related activities, I was also able to do some sightseeing and experience the local Diwali celebrations. Now, back in the Netherlands, it’s time to finish transcribing interviews and gathering the last bits of required data."
Next steps. Martien and Stef are currently working on an article for Water Digest and a paper for a scientific journal. This will be done with the help of supervisors at Utrecht University and KWR Watercycle Research Institute, where Martien is now doing a complementary internship.