Addressing Water Pollution: A review of Zero Liquid Discharge Policy in Tirupur, India

Hook, Savannah
Patel, Ishan
Effluents from Indian textile industries, such as bleaching and dyeing units, are discharged directly into the rivers and other surface water bodies. This adversely impacts the water quality, aquatic species, agriculture, and human health. In Tamil Nadu, a state in southern India, farmers in Tirupur District, a textile manufacturing hub, protested the deteriorating water quality and its impact on their livelihood. In 2011, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board implemented a Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) regulation, which required the textile industries in this state to remove almost all pollutants from the effluent stream. However, there was no commercially viable technology to achieve the stringent standards. This forced many units to either close their operations or move to other states where ZLD was not implemented. Our research focuses on how the lack of a uniform national policy affects this major water pollution problem, and the alternate solutions such as Minimal Liquid Discharge that are developed to minimize pollution levels in the effluent stream.
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