Saturday, December 3, 2022

Plans underway for water recycling

TONOTA: Plans are underway for Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) to supply recycled water for human consumption as one of its drought preparedness and long-term projects.

This was revealed by corporation’s Coordinator, Public Relations and Events Management, Lorato Phuthe, addressing a consultative forum at Tonota College of Education (TCE) auditorium last week.

“Wastewater recycling infrastructure will be developed in areas such Palapye, Serowe, Ghanzi and Gaborone. The Lobatse Master Plan has started. Masama well field is complete with Masama-Mmamashia 100km pipeline also commissioned to bring 64 million litres of water per day closing a deficit of 49 million per Litres in the greater Gaborone,” said Phuthe.

The Tonota Legislator, Pono Moatlhodi who was in attendance commented that the corporation should ensure that the society’s mindset-that waste water is waste and cannot be recycled should first be changed. He had himself seen how it was processed and had seen it purified at the last stage, but when asked to taste the purified water, he refused on the ground that he still recalled how it was in the first stage of processing. But since water is recycled in Namibia, Moatlhodi reasoned, Batswana should be motivated to follow suit, given the scarcity of water in the country; especially during droughts.

The WUC Francistown office General Manager, Modisaotsile Keetile promised to educate and motivate Batswana. He said they are discussing with the ministry of agriculture to start recycling projects with them so that gradually Batswana can adopt the system.

Phuthe said the March 2021 rainy season had significant impact in most dams but strategic dams like Gaborone and Molatedi dams had less impounding.

“All dams: Letsibogo, Shashe, Dikgatlhong, Ntimbale, Lotsane, Thune, Nywane and Bokaa, reached a full capacity except Gaborone Dam hence improved water storage. Currently all dams collectively will take a year, without inflow at current usage consumption rates,” she said.

She said by August 15 2022, the Dikgatlhong dam was 81.2 percent full, and with that amount it could supply water to greater Gaborone, Mahalapye and Serowe for 24 months without inflow. The Letsibogo, which supplies Greater Gaborone, Mahalapye, Palapye, Serowe, BCL mine, Selibe Phikwe at 86 percent would take 21 months without inflow.

The Molatedi and Gaborone dams both supplying greater Gaborone were at 43.6 and 49.4 percent respectively mid-August and will supply water for 48 and 19 months respectively without inflow.

“The Thune dam, supplying ten Bobirwa villages is at 70.1 percent and is to supply for 39 months without inflow. Shashe dam, at 78.9 percent will be able to supply the greater Francistown area for 20 months without inflow. The Ntimbale dam at 87.8 percent will supply the 52 villages in the North East region for 15 months without inflow. The Lotsane dam, at 64.8 percent, will supply its 22 villages in Northern Tswapong and irrigation fields for 22 months without inflow. Bokaa dam will supply greater Gaborone for 12 months without inflow. The Nnwyane dam’s 93.9 percent will let it supply Lobatse town for 13 months without inflow,” she said.

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