ADDITIONAL DFID FUNDING
With St Helena currently experiencing exceptionally dry weather – rainfall so far in 2016 is significantly lower than even during the drought in 2013 and water stocks are seriously low – DFID has responded positively to an SHG and Connect business case and capital request for additional funding for water infrastructure.
St Helena is suffering the effects of a lack of rainfall throughout 2016 and, with only approximately 14% of reservoir capacity filled, the raw water stock on the Island is dangerously low. Normally at this time of year the reservoirs would have been much better replenished by the winter rains and levels would be significantly higher.
As the dry weather continues – with no significant rain forecast over the coming weeks – it is recognised that access to water is a basic, obvious and reasonable need for St Helena. SHG, supported by DFID, is therefore working with Connect to resolve the current crisis and, in the longer term, to ensure that the Island secures adequate access to fresh water and can manage this finite resource sustainably.
SHG and Connect have together achieved much over the past couple of years and have worked hard to identify the best value for money solutions to the Island’s water needs. This additional funding has now allowed Connect to begin to add water transfer systems to the infrastructure – to supplement emergency bowsering – such as pipes, pumps and associated power supplies. It will also allow for a geohydrological study into deep aquifer drilling and the provision of more boreholes.
Finally, all St Helena residents are again reminded to exercise great care and restraint when using water. Every drop counts, every action counts – please do your bit.
9 December 2016