CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE SPEICHER, TIKRIT, Iraq -Standing on the banks of the Tigris, most Americans would not believe any clean water would be produced from the fast moving khaki colored water-this is, however, the main source of water for Iraq.
On May 20, Coalition forces and Bayji Provincial Reconstruction Teams received a full-guided tour of how water from the Tigris ends up flowing out of the faucets of local Bayji homes.
In Bayji, obtaining potable water is like anywhere else--a necessity. Unfortunately for Iraqi families, usable water is not easily accessed by turning on a faucet. The efforts of the Salah ad-Din provincial leadership, coalition forces and PRTs are working to change this major dilemma.
In order for the PRTs and Coalition forces to fix this problem, a closer look into the water distribution process was necessary.
Important assessments of water quality and facilities made in Bayji over the last few weeks provide a closer step toward improving water quality throughout the greater Bayji area.
The process of cleaning the Tigris water is a simple system of moving water from one holding location to another, filtering and treating it through different phases along the way.
Water is suctioned from the muddy waters of the Tigris River and pumped into the tanks of the Bayji Water Treatment Facility, where the water is purified and distributed to more than 250,000 people via a system of pumps and sub-stations.
A significant hurdle to the distribution of water from the treatment facility has been the lack of operating pumps. During the tour only five of the twelve pumps were functioning. Without pumps, water cannot be pushed to the areas that are far from the river's edge.
Simple as this system may be, the equipment used is decades old and would need to be overhauled to meet the system's true potential.
Few things are more important to the residents of Bayji than their access to clean water. In the future, 250,000 people who live the in the greater Bayji area will have access to cleaner water thanks to assessments that have taken place.
Because of the assessments the leaders of Salah Din Province, PRTs and Coalition forces will now have a better idea of what parts of the system need immediate attention.

Page last updated Wed June 24th, 2009 at 12:04