The Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) and Mexican Company, Hi-Pro Ecologicos S.A de C.V on Friday, 20th April, 2018 signed an agreement totalling approximately US$3.5M for the rehabilitation and expansion of the Water Treatment plant located at Shelterbelt, in Georgetown.
The completion of this project will further increase the quality of water and coverage to the Georgetown customer base, which has approximately 31, 488 customers.
This forms a part of the Water Supply and Sanitation Infrastructure Improvement Programme (WSSIIP), which is funded by a grant from the European Union and a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank. Works will commence immediately and will be completed by October, 2019.
Key rehabilitative works which will be conducted include the installation of an additional raw water line for the extraction of surface water, rehabilitation of the existing filter system to adequately treat the groundwater for improved quality of supply and the installation of water quality monitoring system for continuous monitoring of treatment process to ensure consistency in supply.
The anticipated benefits of the interventions include: Increased quantity and continuity of service levels daily, possible reduction in the use of chemicals due optimization of the chemical dosing process, increased percentage of households with water pressure in accordance with national regulations and the overall reduction in production cost per unit of treated water via the use of more efficient and modernised equipment.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in GWI’s Boardroom, Managing Director, Dr. Richard Van West- Charles said that the project marks a significant milestone with respect to the thrust of seeking to improve the water supply in Georgetown.
According to him, due to the expansion of the capital city, the Shelterbelt Water Treatment Plant requires rehabilitation. Acknowledging that in the past there was significant slippage in the quality of water produced at Shelterbelt, he also pointed out that significant progress has since been made.
GWI’s Central Laboratory operates on a 24/7 basis and testing of the water is done on an hourly basis. Samples are also analysed from all treatment stages and from strategic points in the communities in the city.
The water distribution hours at the Shelter Belt Treatment plant has been increased from 17 hours to 24 hours supply, with an increase from 10 Pounds per Square Inch (PSI) to 20 PSI supply pressure. All pump Stations, such as those in Festival City, North Ruimveldt, Kingston, Turkeyen and Industry have seen an extended water supply period of 24 hours.
However, Dr. Van West Charles said that there is room for improvement and the project paves the way. He noted that the project will support and bolster the strategies which GWI has embarked upon and which are outlined clearly in the utility’s five year strategic plan.
The Managing Director highlighted the importance of sound infrastructure to providing the citizenry with a high quality of water. He took the opportunity to stress the significance of ensuring that citizens have adequate information to assist GWI to maintain its infrastructure so that Guyana has one of the highest quality of water in the Caribbean.
Meanwhile, also delivering remarks at the signing were Chairperson of the GWI Board of Directors, Mrs. Patricia Chase-Green and Vice Chairman, Mr. David Dewar, who expressed similar sentiments with regard to the need for rehabilitation of the Shelterbelt Water Treatment plant which was constructed in the 1950s.
It was pointed out that the project forms part of the continuous efforts by GWI to improve the water supply and quality countrywide. Citizens were urged to work along with the utility to ensure safe water is provided.
Meanwhile, Hi-Pro Ecologicos representative, Mr. Luis Tetzin Dominguez Fabela expressed the company’s pleasure in taking up the challenge to ensure that the residents of Georgetown have a better quality of water.
He said that the company has over 20 years of experience in the water sector and assured that they can be relied upon to get a high quality of work done in a timely manner.