Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 18, 2021 (SKNIS): Two water engineers at the St. Kitts Water Services Department are making a clarion call for water conservation to be taken seriously in light of reduced rainfall due to climate change, and with an increasing demand for the precious resource the supply for the general population is threatened as a result.
Cromwell Williams, Hydrogeologist and Acting Water Engineer, and Ryan Phillip, Geologist and Assistant Water Engineer, while appearing on “Working for You” on March 17, said the water situation is dire.
The sustainable use of water is imperative in ensuring that there is a reserve for future generations, thus safeguarding water within the island is of utmost importance.
“We live in a small island; we have limited and a finite support of water and as we continue to develop and expand the demand on that limited supply of water increases and so it is very important that each of us understands that with every passing year it becomes more critical for us to conserve the water that we have”.
Mr. Williams explained that the presence of the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly placed more emphasis on the use of water, from the development of hand sanitizers to the more frequent use of water to keep our hands and surroundings clean and free from germs to mitigate the transmission of the virus.
“It is important that we understand that there are competing uses for water…in an environment where we don’t have a vast supply. When we look at the situation locally, we are not in the position we would like to be in terms of the supply of water to meet the demands” he said.
Mr. Williams further stated, “our supply and our demand [for water] are very, very close …and we need to have excess water because we need to be able to still have enough water in storage in our reservoirs and unfortunately, we are not in that position right now”.
He said that the residents of St. Kitts need to discontinue the culture of wasting water.
“In St. Kitts, we waste a lot of water and we cannot continue that culture that we have a lot of water…we might have a lot of water, but we have a lot of uses for it and we don’t have enough water for the uses that we have,” he said. “Government will always see it as its responsibility to ensure that, we [Water Services Department] endeavour to meet the demands for water”.
Ryan Phillip, Geologist and Assistant Water Engineer, speaking on the importance of water noted that the motto of the St. Kitts Water Department is “water is life and every drop counts.” This motto he said aligns with the theme of the 2021 global recognition of World Water Day, which is “Valuing Water”. World Water Day will be celebrated on March 22.
“Water is definitely an invaluable resource; we need it to sustain life, not only for humans but for animals. We need it for the industry. We need it for agriculture”, he said.