The Barbados Water Authority (BWA) is halfway towards its goal of restoring the Bridgetown sewage plant to 100 per cent functionality.
One of the two processing units at the facility that was down for the last two years is up and running again, Minister of Energy and Water Resources Wilfred Abrahams announced today.
Abrahams said the $400,000 emergency fix began three weeks ago for the Lakes Folly facility, which was essentially on its last leg.
However, while the development represents the first time in close to a decade that both tanks have functioned at the same time, Abrahams pointed out that even with the second tank, the plant was now only at 50 per cent capacity.
“When we would have started the works this tank was down entirely and the other tank, which represented half of the operating power of the plant, was operating at half capacity. So that means that the entire plant was operating at less than quarter capacity,” Abrahams told reporters during a tour of the facility.
The minister further explained that the next phase of the fix would require the BWA to divert all waste to the newly refurbished tank, which would allow for similar repairs to be done on the partially functioning one.
“We have to do the same fix on the other one as well and when we are done with that one we expect the plant to then operating at a 100 per cent capacity. We also would take the opportunity to do other upgrades on the facility to optimize its functionality even more. However, we are way forward than we were three weeks ago,” he said.
Abrahams revealed that the restoration of the tank, which up to three weeks ago was overgrown with vegetation, was no easy task, as large components of the unit were unsalvageable.
He also lauded the workers for doing an “exceptional job “ in less than ideal weather conditions and difficulties in sourcing parts.
“When we started to clean out the tank, everything that could be wrong was wrong. Everything that could rust was rusted; everything that could break was broken. So it really wasn’t a cleaning and a prettying up. In the last three weeks, not accounting those days lost for rain, we have entirely rebuilt this processing unit to the point that unless something really unforeseen happens, we don’t have to look back at this plant for the next 15 years,” he stressed.