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Safety of ocean vessels a priority for Biwater's water intake project

- promises potable water that can be drunk from tap!
Managing Director of Biwater Mr Richard F. Smith spoke of the careful consideration that has been put into the safety of vessels as it relates to the water intake project, which it is seeking Cabinet approval for. "We are conscious of the shipping channels and the shipping channel both at Brandy Wine Bay and Paraquita Bay is sufficiently away from where the intake is. We will have a bouy with a light on it and vessels wouldn't be able to moor on it," Smith assured. Photo: VINO
Biwater has also given the assurance that if given a no objection vote from cabinet for it to source water from the sea, it will produce potable water for consumption from taps in homes. Managing Director of Biwater, Richard F. Smith explained that the company has at its treatment plant a process, which is called
Biwater has also given the assurance that if given a no objection vote from cabinet for it to source water from the sea, it will produce potable water for consumption from taps in homes. Managing Director of Biwater, Richard F. Smith explained that the company has at its treatment plant a process, which is called "post treatment". This entails a treatment called re-carbonate "where you actually bring the water to a potable standard." Photo: VINO
PARAQUITA BAY, Tortola, VI - Having resorted to its last water source for the generation and distribution of potable water supply to residents of Tortola, management of Biwater says careful consideration has been given to the safety of ocean-going vessels and the company's water system that will be constructed in the sea.

At this stage Biwater has not been granted the go-ahead to use the sea as its main supply source but is eagerly awaiting the sitting of Cabinet at the end of January 2013 when this issue will be on the table for discussion and decision.

However, Biwater says it has done all the necessary feasibility studies of using the sea as its source after its first and second options of drilling well holes and using beach sources failed.

In an exclusive interview with Virgin Islands News Online, Managing Director of Biwater Mr Richard F. Smith spoke of the careful consideration that has been put into the safety of vessels as it relates to the project. "We are conscious of the shipping channels and the shipping channel both at Brandy Wine Bay and Paraquita Bay is sufficiently away from where the intake is. We will have a bouy with a light on it and vessels wouldn't be able to moor on it," Smith assured.

He further stated that the possibility does not exist for boats or cruise ships to stray away because they will ground prior to landing on the underwater construction. "I should say that was our most important concern."

Mr Smith has also given the assurance that, though the water will be sourced from the sea, if given a no objection vote from cabinet, it will produce potable water for consumption from taps in homes.

"What we hope to bring to the people of the BVI is potable water, water that you can drink out of the tap. That will be guaranteed because of the processes that we have here," assured Mr Smith.

He explained that the company has at its treatment plant a process, which is called "post treatment". This entails a treatment called re-carbonate "where you actually bring the water to a potable standard."

As works progress at the Biwater facility, the company is working towards arranging public tours for institutions, groups and organisations as a public relations effort to afford residents the opportunity of having a first-hand look and understanding of the full Biwater operations.

Sourcing the water from the sea has added some $2.5M to the company's initial budget, a cost that they had no choice but to single handedly absorb. "That was a hard hit but it's money well spent for the reliability of the source for the future," said Mr. Smith.

With the system up and running, Bi-Water has assured that Tortola is guaranteed twenty four hours supply of potable water.

After a period of sixteen (16) years of operation, the Biwater facilities will then be handed over to Government.

11 Responses to “Safety of ocean vessels a priority for Biwater's water intake project”

  • weed (14/01/2013, 14:51) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Enough of biwater
  • vex (14/01/2013, 16:24) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    well mey bouy ocean conversion still mad as biwater aint going
  • drink (14/01/2013, 17:02) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    BI WATER BI WATER BI WATER BUT NO WATER
  • ABC (14/01/2013, 18:50) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    All this pussey footing by Government is to allow OC more time to draw down their $110,000. dollars a mth water charges. And who is OC? NDP.
    • farmer brown (15/01/2013, 02:16) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
      NDP Politicians feel they could trick Tortola ppl.

      But Tola people smarter than that!!
  • yyyyy (14/01/2013, 20:55) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    All the other plants are using the sea what is the issue people? the sea seems endless and bottomless!!!!
  • wize-up (15/01/2013, 00:12) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    Another foreign company sticking it to us again..will be making big profit in the BVI Market by selling us our own sea water; when we have to speak on these facts, clowns in our country trying to make it a racial issue like we must just sit back and watch the dumb f@U$ and just let it slide....what most persons do not understand our young people are hurting; what the hell-born in a country and just watching government giving it away to foreign investors just for quick money....talk that & who vex, vex ???????
  • bigger picture (15/01/2013, 14:58) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    the agreement signed was based on well drilling and beach sources which failed. Was there anything in the fine print that says "if that fails, we have the right to build in the middle of the water". Seems to me that is yet another and DIFFERENT agreement from the basic agreed one. I think they should have to have another environmental survey taken because at this point, with all the water being taken from the ocean, the mineral make up of the water-- making it more salty and warmer-- will harm many juvenile fish and marine animals and birds. Biwater is doing what it wants without accountability. If drilling didn't work, that is their gamble.
  • dog (16/01/2013, 17:22) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    the water intake issue should have been straightened out before the contract signed. If the original plan doesn't work then biwater should have come back to the table, because what they are planning now is not the original agreement and changes the dynamic and potential impact of the project.

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