Approximately 15,000 residents of the Diamond/Grove area and its environs are expected to receive a better supply of water by December, as the Guyana Water Company (GWI) has completed the drilling of the second well in the area.
At a media visit to the new facility at Little Diamond yesterday, CEO of GWI, Dr. Richard Van West-Charles explained that the well is the first to have been dug using a new ‘reverse circulation’ technique and was done by Netherland-based Company, De Ruiter Groundwater Techneik.
Van West-Charles said that the finished well is the first of three that the Dutch company will be doing, as they will soon commence works at Sparendaam and Sophia.
“This is good for us at this point in time in Guyana. The number of other wells that we have drilled took us three to six months, and we are happy about the success of the well,” Van West-Charles said, while pointing out that the well only took 10 weeks.
In addition to the significantly shorter time that it took for the contractor to produce clean, running water, the CEO of the water company also pointed out that it is costing the company approximately one third of the cost of older techniques employed to drill wells.
While it would normally cost the company in excess of $100 million to construct a well, Van West-Charles said that the new well only cost approximately $40 million.
“These wells are expected to last for about 30 years, and the cost of production is much lower because of new technology and using PVC casing compared to steel casings which are very costly. In Europe and North America they use a lot of the PVC casing, a special one that is used and has a certain rating to stand up to the pressure,” he said.
Van West-Charles also noted that going forward GWI would be adapting to new technology, and will even be procuring a rig with which they can start drilling their own wells.
“…We have got to start to get to the stage where GWI was in the 80s. We used to do our own drilling but then suddenly we went onto contracting everything out and our cost escalated and so we now have to look at that. It doesn’t mean we will abandon the use of contractors, but we have to look at the market and find a balance,” he said, while adding that the staff of the company will also be adequately trained to adopt the new technology.
With respect to the Diamond/Grove community, which has had several water related issues since the beginning of the year, due to the main well on Sixth Avenue, Diamond Housing Scheme experiencing problems, Van West-Charles said that by December, the GWI team should finish installing their transmission and distribution lines to the new well.
The well, the second in the area, is expected to serve some 15,000 customers and reaches a depth of 201 meters.
Van West-Charles pointed out that construction on the third will commence sometime next year, and the Water Treatment Plant will be completed by 2019.