The initiative started with 18 students (from the Centre for Technology Alternatives for Rural Areas (CTARA), IIT Bombay, and 17 students from the SCMS College of Engineering and Technology, Kerala) coming together for a Winter school in November 2017. It was organized by the Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), in collaboration with IIT Bombay. They developed a methodology using open-source mobile applications and Geographical Information System (GIS) to undertake technical and socio-economic analysis of the water and sanitation infrastructure (and related practices) in Alappuzha. The school identified solid and liquid waste pollution in the sub-canals as the major impediment to the health of the canal system.
For more details: Winter School 2017 Report
A comprehensive water and sanitation assessment of Alappuzha was carried out by the CANALPY team. This included a civil survey of the canals to restore flow, understanding the stakeholders (shops, industries), and the assessing the viability of interventions (including the willingness to pay for improved sanitation systems). This was carried out as a Summer School in May 2018 involving 300+ students (from multiple disciplines) from all over India. Cochin University College of Engineering ( Kuttanadu) partnered CANALPY in this effort.
For more details: Summer School 2018 Report
CANALPY organized a Winter School in December 2018. The school’s major focus was assessing major polluters and pollutants in Alappuzha town, along with understanding the management of organic and inorganic waste, and the entire waste chain cycle. At the end of the exercise, CANALPY came up the integrated solid and liquid waste management plan for Shadamani canal, one of the sub canals of Alappuzha.
For more details: Winter School 2018 Report
From the surveys carried out during the Summer School, it was determined that the maximum blackwater pollution in the subcanals came from two layers of houses immediately adjacent to the canals. A socio-economic survey of households across six canal sheds was carried out, along with a civil survey of on-site sanitation systems (septic tanks), to identify households with faulty on-site system. After analyzing the survey data, a list of beneficiaries was prepared after consultations with ward councilors and was subsequently submitted to Alappuzha Municipality. This was a list of on-site sanitation systems that needed upgrading. A report was also submitted to the Municipality which included detailed design of septic tank for safe containment, an estimate of costs, and a strategy for speedy implementation.
Coming up with a management plan for the plastic waste was part of the total sanitation plan for a canal shed. For this, the amount of plastic waste generated in each household/ward had to be determined. As a first step, Canalpy volunteers from St. Joseph’s college collected plastic waste with the trash bags from over 300 households located across three wards on 11th November 2018. Information on plastic waste management practices was also collected during this period and brand auditing was done to understand possibilities for claiming ‘Extended Producer Responsibility’.
To have a proper waste management system in place, it is invariably important to understand the entire value chain, starting with the individual households or units. Analysis of the current practices and infrastructure helped in developing a contextual understanding of the current solid and liquid waste management practices. This was critical to developing a comprehensive integrated solid and liquid waste management plan for Alleppey. These plans were prepared for the Shadamani canal and Marthoma canals of Alleppey.
For more details:
CANALPY sought to understand the nature of challenges to move towards a circular economy regime in solid waste management. The major objective of the study was to compile the various solid waste management systems adopted by Alappuzha municipality, suggest improvements for improving the efficiency of existing waste management systems in the municipality.