ADB extends $500-million facility to develop climate-resilient projects in Tamil Nadu
A $2-million grant from the Asian Clean Energy Fund would fund the solar energy pilot project in the state
New Delhi: Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Tuesday said it has approved $500-million finance for a multi-tranche financing facility (MFF) which would develop climate-resilient water supply, sewerage, and drainage infrastructure in at least 10 cities of Tamil Nadu.
“ADB’s financing would be provided in three tranches between now and March 2022. It would develop climate-resilient sewerage collection and treatment and drainage systems in 10 cities, and install the country’s first solar-powered sewage treatment plant,” said the regional development bank.
The programme would introduce smart water management systems to reduce non-revenue water and strengthen operational efficiency. Around four million people would benefit from piped water and sewerage connections and improved drainage.
“With almost half of the state population living in cities, Tamil Nadu is the most urbanised of India’s large states,” said Ron Slangen, senior urban development specialist, ADB.
Slangen said that managing this rapid urbanisation was essential for sustaining its economic growth and alleviating poverty. The state suffers from recurring droughts and erratic monsoons linked to climate change resulting in severe water scarcity and urban flooding.
The first $169-million tranche of the programme would target the cities of Chennai, Coimbatore, Rajapalayam, Tiruchirappalli, Tirunelveli, and Vellore.
A $2-million grant from the Asian Clean Energy Fund, established by the Government of Japan, would fund the country’s first solar-powered sewage treatment plant on a pilot basis in the state.
Centre and state government, Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board, and various urban local bodies would provide $766.4 million toward the total programme cost. An ADB technical assistance grant of $1 million would accompany the programme to support capacity building. The MFF availability period is up to 30 June 2026.
While Tamil Nadu was a more advanced state in India accounting for the second-largest contribution to India’s economy, the rapid influx of people to urban areas was putting severe pressure on infrastructure services and threatening the livability and competitiveness of cities.
“Urban service levels remain low, with less than half of households served by piped water, and nearly a third of supplied water lost through aging distribution networks resulting in an intermittent supply of two hours per day. Only 42 per cent of households are covered by a sewerage network, with 43 per cent of sewage disposed directly into waterways untreated,” the bank said in a statement.
The ADB programme would provide direct assistance in these areas as part of its support to the state’s Vision Tamil Nadu 2023 to provide universal access to water and sanitation and to develop world-class cities in high-performing industrial corridors.