Despite the Amazon Basin providing one-fifth of the worlds’ fresh water, many of the communities living there do not have access to safe drinking water. Although river water is plentiful it is not fit to drink, carrying parasites that cause a range of intestinal problems such as diarrhoea, malnutrition and chronic illnesses which especially affect the young and very old.
This is the current situation for many of the communities living within the Trocano Araretama REDD+ project, and during initial community consultations, safe drinking water was one of the top priorities for inhabitants, alongside the supply of reliable energy and increased access to healthcare and education.
With this in mind, CGV’s Environmental Engineer Victor Reina was tasked with designing a simple and effective rainwater harvesting system that could be rolled out and maintained throughout the Trocano communities. To help with this task, Professor Roland Vetter and his assistant Ray Rodrigues, who are both members of INPA (National Institute of Amazonia Research), were engaged as consultants on the project.
Having completed the design stage of the rainwater harvesting system, Ray Rodrigues will begin the task of taking accurate measurements in order to install the system and begin the implementation of capturing, filtrating and storing rainwater. A team from CGV, along with Ray and representatives of the Municipality of Borba, visited the location of our pilot project, the Maria Borges School in the São Joaquim Community, on the 15th August. They will also study the best alternatives to ensure the water supply is not interrupted during the dry season, when the frequency of rainfall decreases dramatically in the Amazonas State.
This pilot project will provide drinking water for the Maria Borges students, who at the moment use chlorine and flocculants for the treatment and purification of their drinking water. The Maria Borges School was strategically chosen to host this pilot project as the school is one of the largest in the Municipality of Borba, having 8 teachers and serving 75 students, who not only come from the São Joaquim Community but also travel to the school from other communities in the surrounding areas.
Among the attendees of this significant development for the Trocano project are Laine Tavares of CGV, Ray Rodrigues of INPA, and a number of senior Municipality representatives. Organising transport and overnight accommodation for this visit are Lene Maria Machado, Ana Lucia Garcia de Moraes and José Rocha de Abreu from the Trocano Araretama team based in the Municipality of Borba.
A report on the design of the system and the results of this visit will be published soon on the CGV and Trocano project websites.
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