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The Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has said it may have to shut down its treatment plant at Daboase in the Western Region if the rains do not fall soon.
The company’s Director of Communication, Mr Stanley Martey, told Class91.3FM’s 505 news programme on Tuesday, 21 January 2020 in an interview that the resurgence of illegal small-scale mining fuelled by the dry season has resulted in extremely high turbidity of the dwindling water sources, thus, compelling the utility company to spend more than usual in treating a cubic metre of water.
On the national average, Mr Martey said the situation has increased the cost of treating 1,000 litres of water by GHS30 but in certain areas, it is as high as GHS50 even though the “average tariff given to us by the PURC is GHS8”.
“In Takoradi, for instance, we are praying that we should have early rains”, he said, adding: “In the next three to four weeks, if we don’t get rains and the galamsey operations also do not stop, we may have to shut down the treatment plant in Daboase”.
“This is how serious the situation is because there isn’t enough water and the little water that is available is also so turbid and it silts the intake area, so, we are unable to obstruct enough and it’s not economically prudent to have to be treating water for it to go to waste.
“For instance, they obstruct water and then you lose about 40 per cent of the water. Look at the energy cost and look at the cost of the chemical as well, so, it doesn’t sound right … so, if we have to go below 50 per cent of the water obstructed, then we may have to shut down”, he noted.
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