Dr. Xavier Swamikannu

Grant Category: Fulbright-Nehru Environmental Leadership Program
Field of Specialization: Environmental Science
Name: Dr. Xavier Swamikannu
Official Address and Designation: AT-Large, Consultant
Los Angeles, California
Host Institution in India: Central Pollution Control Board
New Delhi
Duration of Grant: 4 months
September 2011
Brief Bio:
Dr. Xavier Swamikannu served as Chief of the Storm Water Program, California Environmental Protection Agency's (CalEPA) Water Board in Los Angeles, until January 2010, and is presently an independent consultant. He holds a Doctorate degree in environmental science and engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and a Master's in environmental sciences from Texas Christian University. He completed his undergraduate study at St. Joseph's College in Bangalore, India. Dr. Swamikannu is a national expert in the area of storm water pollution control, and is credited with advancing California's regulatory program to national prominence. During a career that spanned more than two decades at the CalEPA, Dr. Swamikannu also partnered with the faculty at UCLA to conduct storm water research, and has co-authored several research papers with them. Dr. Swamikannu served from 2007 to 2009 as a member of the special committee of the National Academy of Sciences that was created to make recommendations to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) on improving the management of urban storm water pollution in the United States. The USEPA is presently implementing these recommendations. He received the prestigious Stone Rollers Award in 2010 from the Centre for Water Protection in Maryland for his contributions to water quality improvement nationally.
India's regulatory framework for controlling surface water pollution has existed since 1974. India's program, which is focused on industrial wastewater effluents, has had arguably limited success. The challenges India faces today in controlling water pollution, as she assumes a global leadership role, have only increased, and a new regulatory framework is needed, that is current and relevant. Dr. Swamikannu's Fulbright-Nehru research will review the existing regulatory framework in India to manage surface water pollution, and offer recommendations on making it more effective in light of the divergent U.S. experience with regulating point source wastewater pollution and diffuse storm water pollution.