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Meghalaya planning to use AI-powered boat to clean Umiam lake

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SHILLONG, Aug 27: The Meghalaya government is planning to
use an AI-powered robotic boat to clean the scenic Umiam lake
that is being ravaged by plastic waste, an official said on
Umkhrah and Umshyrpi rivers, which flow through state capital
Shillong, carry tonnes of plastics every day and dump them into
the southern part of the lake, which is only accessible by boats,
he said.
“We are impressed by the demonstration given by ClearBot.
They have demonstrated that they can clean the waste in the
most economical way,” Health Secretary Ram Kumar, who is
the nodal officer for the Smart Village Movement, told PTI.
He said ClearBot, a Hongkong-based company, gave a
demonstration over one week, and the self-driving boat is
collecting 200 kg of waste in one session.
It is one of the companies shortlisted by non-profit Smart
Village Movement, which works on different projects in
collaboration with the state government, called in for the

ClearBot co-founder Siddhant said the Umiam lake is one of the
dirtiest water bodies that he has been to.
“It will be a privilege to see our boats clean this mess in a few
months’ time, given a chance,” he said.
“The boat that we brought here is a small one, which can pull
out 200-400 kg of waste in a day. If the bigger boat is put into
work, all the waste will be cleared in a few months,” he said.
Local fishermen of the nearby Mawdun village lauded the
efforts to clean up the lake.
One of them, W Lyngdoh, said he and his fellow fishermen had
lost all hope.
“The waste has made fishing more difficult. I have seen that the
machine can really do the job,” he said.
If commissioned with the job, the cost of cleaning by ClearBot is
about the same as an earthmover, Siddhant said.
Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma is monitoring the overall
implementation of the project, he said.
At present, some of ClearBot’s boats are engaged in cleaning
waste in Varanasi and Bengaluru. (PTI)

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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur
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