India utilizes underground water more than any other country in the world. In fact, nearly 25 percent of all water that the globe extracts is in India. Within this, 90 percent of those residing in rural areas use this groundwater as the sole source of replenishment. Problems such as open defecation and the high cost of filtered water lead to a lack of sanitation and access to clean drinking water in rural India. One company, WATSAN in rural India, is targeting this through the creation of a clay-based water purification system.
What is WATSAN?
Chandrasekaran Jayaraman founded WATSAN in India in 2009. A portmanteau of the words ‘water’ and ‘sanitation,’ WATSAN is working to provide clean water and sanitation systems through low, cost-effective methods to locations in rural and urban India. Its water purification devices have successfully fulfilled the U.N. Sustainable Development Goal 6 and has further progressed the mission to provide potable water to all.
The Filtration System
WATSAN’s water filtration system, the ‘CPO Natural Terafil Water Filter,’ works in a simple yet complex way. WATSAN’s filters do not use chemicals to purify the water; instead, they rely on natural materials to do the job. Built from nano-clay particles, the Terafil candle contains pores that are smaller than harmful bacteria and microbes. When polluted water pours through the candle, the harmful bacteria and iron particles remain on top while the clean water continues passing through the filter.
WATSAN in rural India has installed unique water filters for those that fall below the poverty line. This ensures that everyone has access to their filter without any complicated assembly. WATSAN’s design also allows for easy storage, ensuring that their filters take up a minimal amount of space.
Due to the continued consumption of polluted water, a multitude of waterborne illnesses infects many people living in rural India. WATSAN has crafted a specific formula to alleviate these issues. With its filtration system, WATSAN in rural India has been able to deliver clean drinking water to over 16,000 homes in just a single year. This has effectively eliminated the number of people who waterborne illnesses affect.
Specifically, 25 million people across India have been living with no option but to consume fluoride-saturated water over the accepted parts per million, leaving many susceptible to several illnesses. The Terafil Water Filter filters minerals such as fluoride out and ensures that the water people consume contains the necessary parts per million and prevents diseases such as skeletal fluorosis and severe diarrhea. This exemplifies how simple solutions can dissolve large-scale issues.
WATSAN alone has provided products to over 2.15 million households in over 18 states in rural India. Going forward, WATSAN has committed itself to providing over 100 million rural families with its products over the next three years. Overall, WATSAN is just one of many innovative companies giving back to communities in rural India through its commitment to sanitation and potable water. Although access to clean resources in India is a persistent problem, effective work is combatting this. The Terafil Water Filter is a perfect example of a simple solution with the ability to create change.
– Laurel Sonneby