Ministry of Water and Sanitation has urged the country’s water boards to embrace use of solar as an alternative source of energy in pumping water to reduce supply interruptions as well as the cost of electricity.
Deputy Minister of Water and Sanitation John Bande made the remarks on Thursday in Mzuzu after touring the Northern Region Water Board (NRWB) Water Efficiency Project and the Nkhata Bay Water Supply and Sanitation project.
During the visit it was learnt that the solar panels will produce 1300 kilowatts, which will reduce monthly water bills by at least 40 percent.
The board pays almost K8 million in electricity bills a month.
Said Bande: “For a long time, Mzuzu City has had inefficient power supply, which is not consistent with what government believes in. We believe that we should have sustainable supply of water resource to all citizens in the country at any one time.
“So, the coming of this project is a capacity boost because there will be more water stored and there will not be interruptions in the supply because we have solar power to make it sustainable so that there is always pumping of water.”
He encouraged other water boards to emulate what NRWB has done.
NRWB board chairperson James Munthali said the coming in of solar power, providing 1300 kilowatts will help lessen water supply interruption and help the board save money paid through bills on energy.
The $30 million Nkhata Bay project involves rehabilitating, upgrading and expanding the existing Nkhata Bay Town Water Supply System and provision of solid and liquid waste management facilities to provide reliable and sustainable potable water and sanitation services.