June 14, 2021

Honduras and the WB seek to improve water service efficiency in the face of severe drought



The Government of Honduras and the World Bank (WB) presented on Monday a project aimed at increasing the efficiency of the potable water service in the Central District, which make up the cities of Tegucigalpa and Comayagüela, amid the severe drought in the country.

In the presentation, the Honduran president, Juan Orlando Hernández, thanked the support of cooperating organizations, especially the World Bank, that collaborate with his country with technical assistance, strategic plans, long-term vision and resources to implement them, according to a Presidency statement.

“Today in the morning we launched a project to provide water with 139 neighborhoods that do not reach water, if not by way of it being 50 times more expensive than the middle class pays in Honduras and are the poorest neighborhoods” , stressed the ruler.

The objective of the project is to improve the capacity of water production and the efficiency of the distribution network and, for this, the availability of the liquid will be improved to increase the frequency of supply services.

IMPROVE BASIN MANAGEMENT

In addition, it includes strengthening the security of the Los Laureles and La Concepción dams, the main ones in the Honduran capital, as well as developing tools to improve river basin management and climate resilience.

The event was also attended by the mayor of the Central District, Nasry Asfura, the director of the WB for Central America, Seynabou Sakho, the director of Sustainable Development for Latin America and the Caribbean of that organization, Anna Wallenstein, his representative in Honduras, Boris Weber, and Government members, among others.

The Honduran president also highlighted “the courage” of the mayor of the Central District for initiating the transfer to the municipalities of the ownership of the water service that until now has been governed by the National Autonomous Service of Aqueducts and Sewers.

“The steps that have been taken are decided steps, they are steps of brave people, because it is not easy to manage a problem that has to do with the level of scarcity that the capital city has and the importance that drinking water has in life “he emphasized.

He also said that now is the time to acquire new practices that contribute to combating the effects of climate change.

WATER COST

“We have to understand that, in addition to this acute problem, we also have a problem of inequality, because we do not value what water costs,” he said.

The ruler said that the Honduran Dry Corridor, which communicates part of the southwestern region with the center of the country, is in “emergency” due to the drought, so it is necessary to find that the producer “who does agriculture in a primitive way can give the jump to use the irrigation system ”.

He stressed the need to “start educating people and we have to start educating ourselves and understand the magnitude of the problem.”

TAKE CARE OF WATER

The director of the World Bank for Central America, Seynabou Sakho, said that taking care of water is a fundamental issue, since “without water, there is no life.”

“This transformation has to start with Tegucigalpa and we are working in the Dry Corridor in the modernization of the José Cecilio del Valle dam, but also in projects with cities in Honduras to support these parties,” he said.

Sakho said that people need “better services” and urged the population to support such projects that seek to “transform water and sanitation services” in the capital, to “respond to the demands of a population that deserves better services. ”

The drought that affects the Central American country is the most severe in recent years and has destroyed, mainly in the Dry Corridor, subsistence crops of basic grains such as corn and beans.

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