Dutch to assist in designing US$30M water treatment plants

first_imgThe Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) has turned to its Dutch counterparts in Suriname, to assist in the designing of three new Water Treatment Plants to be built at Diamond, East Bank Demerara (EBD), Uitvlugt, West Coast Demerara (WCD) and Sheet Anchor, Canje, Berbice – at a cost of US$30 million.The decision was taken following a visit by a team of specialists from the Surinamese Water Supply Company (SWM), which discovered design flaws in the Linden Water Treatment Plant that has since been causing headaches for the residents of the community and GWI.This disclosure was made Friday as GWI wrapped up the Guyana leg of a partnership being fostered between the two countries’ utility companies, with the support of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).GWI’s Managing Director Dr Richard Van West-Charles provided an update on the two-country partnership, along with IDB Country Representative Sophie Makonnen.The visiting Surinamese team included: Wendell Purperhart, chief of the Central Water Division Department (SWM); Anushka Salmin process engineer, and Jerrol Ferrier head of the West Division.Design flawsDr West-Charles told the media that it was discovered that the Linden Water Treatment Plant is being supplied through two sources of water – surface and below surface – but the treatment plant was designed to be supplied from only one source and this has led to the problems being experienced.He further disclosed that water samples have already been taken at the three proposed locations for the treatment plants, and this has since been sent to Suriname to be forwarded to the Netherlands for testing.He said the results will inform the level of collaboration required in relation to any redesigning of the treatment plants for Diamond, Uitvlugt and Sheet Anchor.The GWI head surmised that the process is expected to take about two weeks and will inform design parameters to be employed for the new plants.Guyana/Suriname MoUMeanwhile, providing an update on the partnership entered between the two countries, Dr West-Charles said GWI is looking forward to inking a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Surinamese, “that lives and helps us to move forward in the level of collaboration.”He reminded that the initiative is borne, in part, out of meetings between the two Heads of States – David Granger and Desi Bouterse – who would have held several ‘get-togethers’ with each other over the past six months, to discuss increased collaboration between the two countries.“We both would like to thank the IDB for this initiative and we will hope that we make this a fruitful venture,” Dr Van West-Charles said, in reference to charting the way forward.According to Dr West-Charles, the collaboration has been immensely useful to GWI and its team since, “our young engineers have been able to appreciate and improve their knowledge and skills in a number of areas.”Non-revenue waterHe told the local media corps that among the areas of cooperation GWI is keen on is the Surinamese approach to handling ‘non-revenue’ water – a result of theft and line losses in its distribution system.He said, “the Surinamese Water Company has managed to have 100 per cent of its consumers in the Nickerie region metered, and the ‘non-revenue’ water losses are at 20 per cent – an impressive feat by any comparison.”The GWI director said that a team from Guyana will be heading to Suriname next month as part of the continued partnership and that team will also be looking specifically at strategies that can be adopted by GWI in reducing its water losses.Meanwhile, addressing the local media corps at the GWI Head Office, Jerrol Ferrier welcomed the initiative and pointed to the fact that in the past there would have been visits by individuals between the two utility companies – this is the first time it has involved teams of specialists.“We have good programmes set up and we can assist with the experience,” he said, even as he pointed to the fact that the Surinamese are keen on learning some of the techniques developed by GWI.The Surinamese team arrived in Guyana earlier this week and over the successive days benefited from a number of site visits, including the beleaguered Linden Water Treatment Plant, GWI’s Shelter Belt and a number of well facilities, among others.The team during their visit also met with Vice President and Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Minister Carl Greenidge and Minister within the Ministry of Communities, Dawn Hastings.last_img read more