Innovations

UN Sustainable Development Goal

6
Clean Water and Sanitation

Business

Nepal

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  • Narayan  Manandhar
    Narayan Manandhar Technologies to harvest rainwater fulfill demand for water in a parched Kathmandu Valley. The company is expected to mitigate the problems of water shortages and help conserve the environment.
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Driving Change Through Water Conservation and Natural Systems

Date published: 18 Jan 2017
Nepal     3 likes   3

Overview

Why waste water when it pours from above? Why not conserve it and reuse it to create a green and sustainable source of energy? Questions like these helped inspire the creation of SmartPaani.

innovation photo

Innovation

SmartPaani uses technological innovations in order to gather rainfall, which would typically just run off of the surface pavement wasted. After collecting the water off rooftops and gutters, it then goes through a filtration process before use for various purposes. Post collection, SmartPaani provides two different filters that make rainwater safe to drink. In addition, excess rainwater is returned back into the ground completing nature’s cycle. According to the KUKL, the water supply corporation, the water requirement for Kathmandu Valley is more than 360 million liters per day.

In addition to rainwater harvesting and water filtration, SmartPaani also provides wastewater treatment and recycling solutions. These reduce pollution in nearby bodies of water and demand from the municipal or groundwater supply.  

Aside from their focus on water resources, SmartPaani also counters pollution through the use of solar power. SmartPaani generates power from solar panels to power their office. Their office runs a hundred percent on green renewable energy, and they are the benchmark for Eco-friendly firms who practice what they preach.

To summarize, SmartPaani provides a cleaner and greener option of energy and water. SmartPaani is tackling the water crisis in Kathmandu Valley and supporting the UN Global Goal 6 & 7, Clean Water and Sanitation & Affordable and Clean Energy.

Overall impact

SmartPaani has partnered with more than 50 schools to install water filter systems and provide Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) education to students. This education increases the impact of the system as students can go home and explain to their families the importance of good WASH practices.

Also, SmartPaani saves up to 100 million liters of water per year via the systems installed for their clients. Additionally, 300 thousand liters is collected and recharged back into the ground on their office premise alone. The company can help reduce purchasing water from marketplaces by 50-70%. If it wasn't for the company, many families would struggle financially to purchase the water they need.

Inspiration

Most of Nepal’s water comes directly from mountains and glaciers, however this is not the case in Kathmandu. Kathmandu has faced a chronic water shortage for the past 2 decades, leading to significant efforts to promote alternatives including rainwater harvesting. The founders of the company saw the efforts and noticed an opportunity to provide a business approach to scale water management technologies. This inspired them to start SmartPaani, a company that is working to change the way people use and benefit from water, life’s most essential resource.

Business benefit

SmartPaani has successfully grown over the last five years and has expanded to over 16 districts. “SmartPaani till date is the first private initiative in this sector that runs without any outside funding or donations. It is the business here that conducts business in this scale,” quoted Tyler McMahon, one of the founders. The company has provided renewable water and energy solutions to many households, businesses, and educational institutes.

The company has also offered its services to common people at affordable costs. The number of people visiting their offices asking for their services is growing. It is a sign that the people are beginning to become more aware of SmartPaani and the benefits of sustainable water use. Another achievement is the growing number of people adopting renewable sources of energy as they learn it is less costly as compared to other sources in the long run.

 

Social and environmental benefit

Environmental: The company’s core business of sustainable water management benefits the environment, 100 million liters a year are either collected or used, reducing pressure on other sources, or recharged back into the ground, raising the water table. The office runs on solar power eliminating the need for a polluting diesel generator. All of the systems installed and promoted by SmartPaani have long-term sustainability in mind, reducing water demand, electricity consumption, and waste.

Social: The company advocates gender equality through its staffing policy and by empowering women in the community by training a network of women entrepreneurs to sell the Tripti Water Filters across Nepal. SmartPaani has also helped the local community through awareness programs. “Just because water looks clean, it isn’t clean at all so we focus on providing people clean water. People suffer from many waterborne diseases because of lack of access to clean drinking water, we provide awareness to people about clean water,” said SmartPaani’s Marketing Manager, Anisha Karn.   

Interview(s)

Suman Shakya, Tyler McMahon, and Hem Narayan Shrestha, Founders and Anisha Karn, Marketing Manager

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3 comments
  • Narayan  Manandhar
    Narayan Manandhar Technologies to harvest rainwater fulfill demand for water in a parched Kathmandu Valley. The company is expected to mitigate the problems of water shortages and help conserve the environment.
    January 18
  • Kevin Payne
    Kevin Payne A wonderful story of a sustainable enterprise capturing rain and sunlight to promote widespread stakeholder flourishing that includes customers, employees, students, and local water resources.
    January 18
  • Rameshwar Karmacharya
    Rameshwar Karmacharya Water water every where but not to drink.Drinking water shortage is one of main problem of Kathmandu valley and problem of all over Nepal.This project if implemented in a larger scale may play significant role to solve water shortage problem.Thanks Ashraf...  more
    January 23