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Tuesday, July 04, 2006 

New agreement improves water supply
Tuesday July 04 2006

by Patricia Campbell

The Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA) has seen a big boost to its water supply, taking it one step closer to solving the water shortage which have been plaguing customers for months.

On Friday, a new Enerserve reverse osmosis unit located at APUA’s Crabbs facility began producing 700,000 gallons of potable water per day, increasing Enerserve’s daily supply to APUA from 1.8 million gallons to 2.5 million gallons.

As a result, APUA Water Manager John Bradshaw said consumers across Antigua should expect a more reliable supply of water with fewer periods when water is unavailable to householders.

“It will take to just under five million gallons per day, in terms of total supply and our forecasted demand is 5.2 million gallons, so we’re just short about 300,000 gallons per day,” Bradshaw said.

“At times, we may have water up to 24 hours per day and sometimes we may have it for 12 but there will be a significant improvement in the water supply to all consumers in Antigua.”

Enerserve Vice President Bill Harless explained the upgrade, completed last week, was the first step in a plan to increase the company’s water production to 3.5 million gallons per day by the end of the year. This would require the installation of two additional reverse osmosis units, scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.

Harless said, in accordance with Enerserve’s contract with APUA, his company was bearing the cost of the equipment upgrade and has already invested US$550,000 in the new unit. By the end of the year, he expected the cost associated with expansion to balloon to US$3 million.

Enerserve now supplies just over one half of APUA’s available water supply but Bradshaw said APUA planned to establish two more reverse osmosis facilities of its own before the end of the year, thus reducing the dependency on supply from the private company.

One would be at Camp Blizzard in Coolidge while the other would be located at Ffryes and each would produce 700,000 gallons daily.

Minister of Public Works Wilmoth Daniel sampled the water during a visit to Crabbs yesterday and said he was extremely pleased with the quality being produced. He explained that APUA approached Enerserve, to expand its operation, in response to the public outcry over the lack of reliable water supply.

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