GIS - June 18, 2012: The Central Water Authority (CWA) laboratory has obtained the ISO 17025 accreditation certification from the Mauritius Accreditation Service. This accreditation is testimony to the scientific competence of the laboratory personnel as regards the procedures adopted to ensure that the quality of drinking water provided by the CWA is of good quality and its reliable, modern and well-calibrated equipment.
The Chairperson of the CWA, Mr Prem Saddul, made this announcement today at a press conference in St Paul. He was flanked by the Acting General Manager, Mr Dev Aukle; the Head of laboratory, Mr A.K Gopaul and the Chief engineer, Mr Jeet Munbauhal. He said that the accreditation of the CWA laboratory is a guarantee to consumers for the water quality being provided by the institution.
Mr Saddul appealed to the population to drink tap water and to ‘consume green’. He said that drinking tap water saves money, reduces greenhouse gases and prevents plastic bottles from ending up in our landfill stations and oceans. In Mauritius one litre of tap water costs less than one cent whereas in France bottled water costs 250 times more than tap water. In 2010, 280 billions of water bottles were disposed of in the world, among which 86% landed up as waste.
According to Mr Gopaul, the CWA laboratory is well-equipped to carry out all tests, adding that it will be equipped with two more microscopes to monitor biomass in water. An expert from the Japan International Cooperation Agency is in Mauritius since last year to train the laboratory personnel on water analysis and treatment. The CWA laboratory carries out physicochemical, microbiological and biological tests on a routine basis and samples are collected from reservoirs, boreholes, rivers and the distribution system.
As regards water situation in reservoirs, Mr Aukle pointed out that the level is above average and that the situation is normal. As at 17 June 2012, water level in Midlands Dam was 100%, Piton du Milieu 94,6%, La Nicolière 97,7%, Mare aux Vacoas 87.5%, La Ferme 92,5% and Mare Longue 84,4%. With a view to maintaining a comfortable water level in reservoirs till next year, only 70 million litres of water are being pumped per day from Mare aux Vacoas as compared to 110 to 120 million litres per day. Furthermore water cuts are still being carried out in the Plaine wilhems.
Speaking about the replacement of water pipes, Mr Munbauhal said that investments worth several billion rupees are needed. Since last year till date, around Rs 1 billion have been invested for pipe replacement name in Quartier Militaire, Mont Ida, Plaine des Papayes, Quartier Militaire to Salazi and Camp Fouquereaux to Alma.
The CWA complaints handling mechanism namely the 170 hotline service is being revamped so as to reduce the time between the moment a complaint is recorded and the work is carried out on field. According to the chairperson, the situation is being monitored closely and that the CWA is working with valve operators to solve the problem of bursting pipes. Teams are working on the field have been strengthened so as to ensure a prompt and quality service to the population, he said.