APUA promises that new RO plants will increase water capacity and 24-hour supply will be available by next summer

The capacity of the Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA) to adequately supply water to citizens and residents will soon be increased, according to its Water Business Unit.

To do so, APUA, which relies heavily on Reverse Osmosis (RO) to supply water throughout the islands, will be depending on an RO plant in Bethesda and another that is expected to be constructed at Fort James.

Ninety-five percent of all water reaching households and businesses now comes from the Reverse Osmosis plants, since the other sources, including Pot Works Dam, are exhausted.

However, reportedly, three representatives have complained to the Cabinet that homes in their constituencies are not receiving water in accordance with the schedule published by APUA.

APUA says that, at present, it produces more than six million gallons of potable water daily, and that demand is currently at seven million gallons per day. 

It notes that there are several communities that receive un-interrupted water supply daily and these are located very close to the desalination plants.

Therefore, plants are being constructed in communities that are close to the ocean, with pumps to aid in distribution of the potable water, APUA says.

Ian Lewis, the water manager, says that when the new plant in Bethesda is placed online, the Water Business Unit will produce more than 10 million gallons of water daily.

The plant is ready and waiting to be commissioned by the Japanese, who provided it as a gift to the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, he says.

APUA is estimating that, by the summer of 2022, it will be able to provide water to every single community in Antigua and Barbuda 24 hours each day.

Meanwhile, the United Progressive Party (UPP) candidate for St. Phillip’s North, Alex Browne, says the Government has taken too long to address the water crisis.

He reminds that it was his opponent, Sir Robin Yearwood, the Minister with responsibility for APUA, who promised that the water problem would have been fixed within eight days of the Labour Party attaining public office.

Browne says, however, that persons continue to struggle to get pipe-borne water to do simple things around the house, such as taking showers.

The UPP candidate says that a picket of APUA is being planned.