THE Water Authority of Fiji believes the construction of a new dam would solve the water woes faced by its customers along the Suva-Nausori corridor.
WAF team leader corporate communications Fulori Turaga said the water supply for the area, which was presently pumped and sourced from the Waimanu River was not enough to meet the demand of its customers.
She said the Waimanu River source had several drawbacks, which included high electricity costs for pumping which was 20 to 25 per cent of WAF's annual operating costs, low quality of water because of agriculture and other land development in the catchment area, and low reliability because of heavy reliance on FEA power supply and pumping.
"WAF is of the view that the construction of a dam would solve these problems," Ms Turaga said.
"Water would flow with gravity, less power costs, fewer disruptions as a result of power outages and pump breakdowns, and improved raw water quality," she said.
"Reduction in reliance on power supplies and pumps would increase reliability and efficiency. There are currently no other gravity sources around or close to the Suva-Nausori area, which would eliminate the use of pumps and electricity for transmission of raw water to our treatment plants at Waila and Tamavua.
"A dam is the next and only feasible option," she added.
The Sovi Basin was a location being considered for the construction of the new dam. Ms Turaga said they had looked at other locations but these were not considered as they were remote, exposed to intensive agricultural farming and earmarked for other commercial developments.
"Design of the dam will aim at optimising the capacity to cater for current and future demand," she said.
She added the new dam would be outsourced and funding would be decided by the government.