German expert says ground water situation in Jaffna 'alarming'

[TamilNet, Friday, 25 July 2003, 14:56 GMT]
Speaking at a seminar held at the International Water Management Institute in Colombo on the potential of rainwater harvesting in the Jaffna peninsula, Mr. Herald Kraft, a consultant to the Jaffna Rehabilitation Project, funded by the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ), revealed that the ground water situation in the Jaffna peninsula is alarming, given the thin cover of soil over the ground water table that provides no protection against pollutants, a press release from the GTZ said on Friday.

The German expert said that as the Jaffna peninsula has a scarcity of uncontaminated underground fresh water, new methods of harvesting rainwater should be considered to meet the increasing demand, according to the press release.

The GTZ said that Mr. Kraft had spent several months studying Water Supply, Rain Water Harvesting, Waste Water and Solid Waste Management in the Jaffna peninsula.

According to Mr. Kraft, the sandy soil has a very low purification capacity, and pollutants such as agricultural fertilizers, pesticides, fungicides and herbicides, as well as liquid and solid industrial wastes, oil, diesel and petrol can easily penetrate to the ground water.

Mr. Kraft also said that the lime stone cover, which is widespread in the Jaffna peninsula, “provides almost no purification capacity, permitting all pollutants reaching the ground water to spread far and wide.”

“Salination, along with contamination from the surface,” he said, “has made it vital for such drinking water from local ground water sources to undergo sophisticated chemical treatment before it can be considered safe for human consumption.”

The GTZ said that it would launch a pilot project at the Kopay Christian College. The school buildings at this college provide 1,845 square metres of roof surface and will be connected to a cistern of 600 cubic metres. GTZ estimates that this collection will be sufficient to provide drinking water to the students and teachers of the college for 365 days a year.

According to GTZ water resource experts, schools, hospitals, and public buildings that have large roof areas are perfectly suited for rainwater harvesting, as they are usually covered with clay tiles.

The experts hope that such an alternative source of fresh water will be beneficial as more and more refugees return to their homes in Jaffna, which is expected to exacerbate the ground water situation.

 

Latest 15 Reports
01.07.20 13:22  
New secret unit among four SL military and police squads competing to arrest Tamil youth in North
30.06.20 22:10  
Tamils blocked from accessing properties near SL Navy training base in Champoor, Trincomalee
29.06.20 23:29   Photo
Moragoda advising Gotabaya prompts Sinhala parties to scrap Provincial Councils
28.06.20 22:06  
India privileging BRIC/RIC over Quad ‘discordant’, says former US top diplomat
27.06.20 22:11  
Indo-Pacific expert wants US to seek opportunities in ‘Sri Lanka’
26.06.20 21:24  
Russia steps up influence on New Delhi to uphold “multilateralism” against US “rules-based order”
25.06.20 23:53  
Pompeo talks about US reposturing troops, mentions India, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia
24.06.20 23:36   Photo
Devananda circumvents court order, manipulates Jaffna fishers to allow poachers from South
23.06.20 22:03  
Sinhala encroachment of pastureland continues unabated in Batticaloa
22.06.20 18:17  
SLMC Chairman: Time for joint Tamil-Muslim efforts
21.06.20 23:11   Photo
Ex-councillor: Poverty-stricken Tamils at receiving end of SL military brutality in North
20.06.20 23:53   Photo
Tamil man killed, Sinhala Army opens fire at motorbike rider at Mukamaalai in North
19.06.20 23:30  
Dr Amir Ali: SL Archaeology aims to obliterate Tamil traces, shrink territory of Muslims in East
18.06.20 21:02  
Colombo steps up surveillance harassment on organisations operating in East
17.06.20 22:12  
SL military cordons off Jaffna islet with war-time like harassment, families fear reprisals
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=9498