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Fiji Time: 5:32 PM on Thursday 24 April

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Quality water for all

Priya Chand
Thursday, January 17, 2013

WITH the new Ecological Purification System (EPS) in the pipeline, water quality enjoyed by urban people can now also be made available in rural villages and communities.

A workshop on a new water treatment system, hosted by the Department for Water and in collaboration with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in Suva yesterday, revealed that EPS was an economical and ecological way of purifying water.

Works permanent secretary Commander Francis Kean said the vision to provide safe adequate water and efficient sanitation to the whole population in Fiji was in government's roadmap.

"About 70 per cent of our rural population drink water directly from creeks and river sources which are most vulnerable to contamination," said Cdr Kean. "The target is to put EPS into all these water supply systems to remove pathogens before water is consumed." JICA Fiji deputy resident representative, Yutaka Fukase said in his country, the EPS was used in urban and rural areas where there was basic or no treatment of water, and it worked well. "While the EPS is hailed as an effective solution to solving rural water quality woes, it must be noted that the system on its own is useless without the capable personnel who are able to operate and maintain the technology effectively and efficiently," said Mr Fukase.

Professor Emeritus, Shinshu University, Japan and a pioneer of EPS, Dr Nakamoto Nobutada, will train staff of the Water and Sewerage Department, WAF and NGOs on the design and construction of the EPS.

Dr Nobutada said as a result of the ecological process, undesirable impurities such as turbidity, pathogenic bacteria, other organic matter, bad smell, iron and manganese are removed effectively from the original raw water.