Endress+Hauser, a Switzerland-based instrumentation and process automation company, holds around 6000 patents in the area of water management and energy conservation. It has been active in the Indian market for the last two decades. The company has its plant in Aurangabad, Maharashtra. The plant manufactures for the Indian market and also for the export markets in the South East Asian countries, South Africa, and Australia.
It has more than 50 years of global experience in areas of municipal wastewater, industrial wastewater, and potable water. The company recently installed a 5MLD Water Treatment Plant (WTP) at Vivekananda Water Treatment at Belur Math, West Bengal on the banks of the Ganga. Sajiv Nath, Managing Director, Endress+Hauser India, spoke to BE’s Varsha Singh about the recent venture, the technologies used and their investment plans.
Q. How is your recent venture in West Bengal going to benefit the state?
A. This is the state’s first completely automated water treatment plant and the water treated here is as per the guidelines of World Health Organisation (WHO). The cleanliness of the plant is outstanding and there is constant and regular upgradation.
Some time back, around 30 MPs of Gram Vikas Vibhag visited the plant to study it. There had been a constant slew of complaints related to water borne diseases in the area but after the upgradation, the complaints have reduced. With the constant upgradation of the plant and reliable technology partners we will be able to take care of the locality by providing safe drinking water for the next 25 years.
Q. How has the Vivekananda Water Treatment at Belur Math upgraded its technology with an eco-friendly robust Water Treatment Plan (WTP)?
A. The Vivekananda WTP at Belur Math is presently running two times a day for four hours to meet up the daily requirement and producing one million litres of water for their own in-house consumption. The latest instrumentation and automation technology is designed, supplied, installed and commissioned by us. The water quantity and quality is audited day to day by means of a well-maintained laboratory and trained chemists. The plant is operated by skilled engineers and technicians with software based applications. The upgraded version of technology is utilised for monitoring the quantity and quality of water.
The latest instrumentation is used for measuring the raw water volume lifted from river, volume of treated water produce, and drinking water supplied to the distribution zone. All parameters are balanced.
Q. In which other Indian states do you operate and what is your function in those states?
A. Sustaining good ecological water systems is the vision of many regions around the world, and it demands intensive research. In India, there are cities which are not serious on water conservation/management which is resulting in increase of water shortage. Some of the recent initiatives by the government have instilled hope in the citizens. The envisioned 100 smart cities project, the National Mission to clean Ganga and the Total Sanitation Programme are some of them. The Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM) in 2015 has created a new agenda and approach for efficient water management. Some of the projects undertaken by Endress+Hauser are with Pune Municipal Corporation, Trichi Municipal Corporation, Tamil Nadu Municipal Corporation, Delhi Jal Board, Goa Municipal Corporation, Karnataka Municipal Corporation, Karnataka Municipal Corporation, Kerala Municipal Corporation, and Uttar Pradesh Municipal Corporation.
Q. What is your take on Indian government’s Smart Cities Mission? How much are you planning to invest in India?
A. Endress+ Hauser is planning to invest 7-8% of global revenue worth 2.1 billion in research and development globally and our India operations will benefit most with the technology transfer. We are aiming to achieve exports worth Rs.1,000 crore from our Indian operations to South East Asia, South Africa, and Australia.
The company is looking to double its India revenue to Rs. 800 crore by 2020 through smart cities related work. Our entire strategy of doubling the revenue by 2020 hinges on water and energy management work in the smart cities. We have initiated dialogue with civic bodies for tie-ups. Around 55% of our revenue focus will be on the smart city initiative.
We are in the process of expanding our capacity at Aurangabad factory to cater to expected rise in work flow, given the government’s focus on ‘Make in India’ and the Smart Cities Mission. The company has spent about Rs.30 crore on capacity expansion.
Q. India is endowed with vast water coverage and abundant human resources. Has the country built eco-friendly projects and made infrastructure breakthroughs in service of socio-economic development?
A. In a recent study it was found that about 30% to 40% people in India live in cities, which are expected to double in population size by 2050. Growing economy and constantly changing lifestyles, spiralling demand of water and limited sources are bound to increase pressure on already strained water resources.
As per a report by ASSOCHAM and Skymet Weather Services, nine Indian states are reeling under drought and it is reported that there is an increase in the mean annual air temperature in many regions of the country.
The Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) has conducted a survey and the findings are scary. It is seen that most of the cities in India do not have 24/7 water supply and the coverage of sanitation has increased but resource sustainability and slippages remain significant obstacles.
In the recent Union Budget 2017-18 there were various policy initiatives introduced such as UDAY, amendments in National Electricity Act, new solar RPO target for states, bio fuel policy, small hydro policy, offshore wind policy, and new hydrocarbon policy. These would boost the eco system and have the potential to attract global investors to India. Reforms are required and the focus should be to reduce non-revenue water, groundwater exploitation and steps should be taken for waste water controlling.