Grassroots and Rural Innovative Development (G.R.I.D.) Pvt. Ltd.

What is the specific problem you are addressing?

We are addressing the problem of clean drinking water, especially in rural areas. Majority of the rural population in India relies on hand-pumps, rivers/canals and wells to fulfil their water needs. Water from these sources is not only of bad quality (high hardness, high salinity, high tds etc.) and often unsafe for consumption but is also inadequate to sustain the need of the entire village.

The issues related to accessing clean drinking water in rural areas are:
1) Lack of access to treated tap water connection
2) Dependence on hand-pumps and tube-wells for fulfilling water needs
3) Water sources located in far-flung areas
4) Women suffer from ‘time poverty’ on account of time spent on fulfilling their basic necessity ie. fetching water for the entire household
5) Low ability to pay for expensive clean drinking bottled water
6) Lack of access to reliable electricity to run RO systems to purify water
7) Low affordability of masses to access expensive purification technology
8) Lack of awareness among masses on benefits of clean drinking water especially for infants, children and pregnant women
9) High maintenance cost of home RO systems in regions with hard water which makes it expensive in long run.

What is your offering and how does it transform/disrupt the energy sector?

G.R.I.D.'s Solar RO-UV technology is designed to address the water crisis in rural areas with hard water with the use of solar energy. We ensure the energy security in rural areas by integrating solar energy with the RO UV system. Water being a basic amenity is essential for each and every individual. Lack of infrastructure for purification of water leads to severe health issues due to consumption of contaminated water. This intervention of G.R.I.D. focuses on improving the entire village ecosystem and lifestyle standards of the community.

We also aim at creating women entrepreneur by providing appropriate training and workshops to enable them to operate the plant, which will empower them by not only making them self-dependent, but also earn respect in the society, which leads to gender parity within the community.

Our projects use solar energy for electricity generation, thereby giving the villagers access to a cleaner source of energy, which reduces demand for polluting conventional energy and greenhouse gas emissions.

Our project leads to job creation, which leads to an increase in income level, resulting in an improved standard of living of the rural community. Also, the projects are designed in such a way that it provides services in cheaper rates, leading to more savings for the villagers, which indirectly increases their income.

Besides enabling energy and water security, we focus on the overall improvement of the village ecosystem. This is done by creating employment opportunities, women empowerment, and also conducting workshops to create awareness.

What is the underlying technology that you are using?

The solution consists of a Solar Microgrid, a Reverse Osmosis system and UV filter. Its 5-stage water purifier system along with UV purifier produces the safest drinking water by removing dissolved impurities including bacteria, viruses and foreign matters. The result in water that is being consumed in rural areas can range from TDS level of 1500 to 6000, whereas the BIS standard for drinking water is 500 only.

The system can produce a minimum of 500 litres/day up to a few lakh litres of water/day. The solar microgrids along with battery bank circumvent the issue of unreliable electricity supply and can run the RO plant for 10-12 hours/day.

The unique advantage of our solution is the unique business model of the project, which is designed in such a manner that it provides the world’s cheapest water merely at the rate of 0.40 INR and within a payback period under 4 years.

What are the partnerships that you are seeking?

We are looking for an organisation who will support us in terms of networking both in terms of customer acquisitions as well as finding investors for us. Also, we are seeking companies who can provide debt loans as part of their social impact investment programme.

Katarina Hasbani