Sunday, December 2, 2012

In a War Against Leaks

In a War Against Leaks
December 2, 2012
Osmel Almaguer

HAVANA TIMES — The landscaping could easily be that of any one of the
many green spaces that often adorn our city. The sparkling water could
be a river, a small pond or something of that sort. But it's not.

Rather, it's a flood of sewage waste caused by a leak.

This discharge, which was recently tapped in zone 24 of the Alamar
neighborhood, lasted for only a few days. Its central location forced
the authorities to act quickly. However we're not always so lucky when
it comes to these failures. Usually it takes weeks, months or even years
before repair work begins.

Over the last several days I've been troubled by the existence of
several leaks and pools of water in several parts of the capital.
Sometimes these aren't so centrally located, so I guess they'll be more
difficult for the utility company to prioritize for repairs.

In these cases it's necessary for residents to report these problems,
especially because what's at stake are the lives of our children.

Each of these "pools" — some so deep you could swim in them — is a
danger not only in relation to that contagious disease transmitted by
the Aedes aegypti mosquito, but also because of the plagues and bacteria
that can develop in such filthy water.

From the middle of last decade's "Energy Revolution," I recall that
water too represents energy, and that it would be intelligent to tackle
the problems of our water supply, drainage, sewerage, and other aspects
of leaking water present in our country.

Statistics broadcast by the media alerted us to the fact that about half
the water pumped here in the Cuban capital doesn't reach its destination
because of leaks.

They say that water is life, and if that's the case then life is
trickling away. But water is also money, because it costs a lot to
process and pump it. So how many millions are there of us who say we
haven't been squandering water in recent years?

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