The City of Windhoek has revealed plans to improve water collection efficiency through the construction of a N$1,1 billion water reclamation plant as a redress for its reliance on NamWater.
In an interview with Nampa recently, the city's chief engineer for bulk and wastewater Sebastian Husselmann said with the second plant in operation, they will produce more water, and less water will be sourced from NamWater.
He explained that the city spends about N$250 million to N$300 million buying water from NamWater annually.
"We found there is potential to increase our capacity to reclaim water, and this is one of our transformational strategic objectives to reduce our reliance on NamWater as bulk supplier of potable water," explained Husselmann. He said the estimated length for the construction of the new reclamation plant could take between two and five years.
"The process of securing funding and the subsequent tendering might take a year or two before construction can commence," he added.
It is envisaged that the new plant will be constructed next to the current Gammams Water Works in Goreangab, Katutura.
Husselmann noted that the city's water reclamation plant has two ways of recycling water: through the high-water standard purification which can be consumed, and semi-purified water used for gardens and sport fields. He emphasised that 60% of the potable water supplied to Windhoek and Windhoek Rural comes from NamWater as the city only has two aquifers and a water reclamation plant which make up the remaining 40%.
This is not sustainable, and the chief engineer said as part of the city's water demand strategies, people are encouraged to set up tanks at home and harvest rainwater for their gardens, as it reduces water consumption.
However, no rainwater or water from resources other than the main supply from the city may be used for human consumption, unless it meets certain regulations regarding disinfection.