Shirpur-Warwade is the first town in India to implement smart water meters and automatic meter reading systems.
Previously, customer were billed at a yearly flat rate, as the council had no means with which to track the water consumed at individual households. Citizens in drought prone areas experienced intermittent water supply, which led to improper and excessive water use. The municipality therefore created the goal of establishing a 24/7 water supply and introducing fair billing. With data from 13,500 smart meters, the daily water supply has been reduced by 33 per cent. Time spent on the billing process has gone from two months to five days. The transition was challenging due to installations in narrow, dense housing infrastructure, as well as risk-aversion on behalf of the inhabitants.
The flexible mountain options with the ultrasonic meters, alongside training to build trust and awareness between the council and customers, solved the challenges. By converting the previously billed un-metered water into billed metered water, the town is now collectively committed to saving water and has reduced daily water consumption from twelve to eight million litres.