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Solar-powered ATMs bring clean water to Pakistan

Soon residents of Pakistan’s Punjab province are going to get clean drinking water to quench their thirst. You must be thinking what is so great about this news, well, the solar powered ATM that dispenses clean drinking water and not money is what is great and unique about this news. The scheme will make use of solar powered ATMs that is going to solve the clean water scarcity problem in Punjab, Pakistan.

Solar-powered ATMs that dispense water

Solar-powered ATMs

Image Source : Tribune.Com.Pk

The machine occupies a space of two square feet and once a person swipes his smart card in it, he gets his daily share of clean drinking water from it. A program is a result of Punjab Saaf Pani Company and the Innovations for Poverty Alleviation Lab (IPAL)’s collaboration. With an aim to provide clean drinking water to people, the water ATMs are being installed in the rural areas and the outskirts of major urban areas in Punjab alongside the water filtration plants.

IPAL is a research center in Lahore, and Jawab Abbasi is its program manager. He told media that the main purpose behind the installation of these water machines is to help Pakistan government mitigate its water wastage and ensure that people have access to clean drinking water.

These machines have innovative design that is eco-friendly and is of great help for the government. The machines keep a record of the exact quantity of clean water being dispensed everyday in a particular area, enabling government to take further steps to provide water in areas where people have no access to clean drinking water. Not just this, the machines also keep a track of the quality of water it is providing without letting it fall below the set standards.

How it works?

Solar-powered ATMs 2

Image Source : Itu.Edu.Pk

The machine works pretty simply, you swipe your smart card, once the machine authenticates it, and you hear an audio message. The machine has two buttons, one is for starting the water flow and the other is to stop the flow. The sensors in the machine keep a track of the amount of water dispensed everyday and the quantity of it inside. Every family is going get 30 liters of clean drinkable water every day from a water ATM.

Initial installations

A photovoltaic system of solar cells.

To start with, 20 filtration plants will get water ATMs installed alongside them. The first phase of installation is likely to cover Bahawalpur, Rajanpur, and Faisalabad, wherein around 17,500 families are going to benefit from this superb scheme. These three districts in Punjab province of Pakistan are particularly famous for water contamination issues every now and then.

What gave impetus to this project?


The Punjab province of Pakistan was in dire need of clean drinkable water and this is what gave this project wings. To go by the findings of the Punjab Saaf Pani Company, Punjab has a population of 98 million people out of which 13% rural people have access to tap water, and 43% urban people have access to tap water.

Talking about the entire country’s population, 35% people have no access to clean drinkable water, resulting in diseases owing to poor sanitation and hygienic conditions. The Punjab government considered these records, felt the pressing need and allocated 20 billion rupees for the provision of clean drinking water to people. Solar power makes these water ATMs eco-friendly and the clean drinking water that they provide people with makes them human-friendly devices.

Charging a nominal price from the people for the maintenance of the water ATMs, these solar-powered machines will be doing a great job eliminating water-borne diseases and helping people to enjoy a healthy life.

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