WORLD GEOLOGISTS: Providing Water Supply to needy areas around the World

Project location: EL SALVADOR, Honduras, Mali, Salvador
Project start date: February 2002 - Project end date: This project covers various years
Project number: 2001-06
Beneficiary: Geologos del Mundo

Honduras

Project Description

Public water supply using underground water for the Communities of Guaymitas (North of Honduras)

The Community of Guaymitas is located near other 19 rural communities, which were built when the banana multinational that exploited these swampy lands abandoned the region. Many people were then distributed along these territory, which still preserves the names of the banana exploitation times; 29, 38, 39, 40, Guaymitas Viejo, Villa del Carmen, Brisas del Norte, el Carmen, Guaymitas, etc (the table attached shows the number of houses and inhabitants of each community). Some experts of our NGO -World Geologists- have already visited the communities which need water together with the projects' technical director of ASIDE. One, Guaymitas, where the Water Patronage of all the communities is located has been selected. If we are successful in this community, we could act in its area of influence and in case the water flow is sufficient for distribution, the same would be facilitated and the water supply problem could be solved for the whole area.

The Community of Guaymitas is located in the Río Sula Valley in the municipality of El Progreso and in the Department of Yoro. The whole area where the rural communities are located is subject to periodical floods and during the Mitch Hurricane the water level reached 2 m in some places. At the time of this report (2 December 2003), the heavy permanent rains of October and November have produced flood in the Department of Yoro and Atlántida resulting in five deaths and more than 127 000 people without drinking water since the storm started. The water wells have suffered pollution and the water stagnation produces cholera, dengue (both classic and haemorrhagic) epidemics. The storm does not stop and rain keeps falling in the affected zone. The area of Guaymitas is located in a less floodable zone, so the potential water well could be of strategic nature in case of flood and could supply fresh water to the surrounding communities. Today to obtain drinking water people has to travel long distances. Today the available wells have been dug at low depths and produce low flow and bad quality waters, polluted with human and animal detritus. Besides, the frequent use in the banana plantations of nitrogenous fertilisers and organophosforated pesticides, have resulted in heavy chemical and organic contamination of the subsurface aquifers of the Río Sula alluvial. Our NGO-World Geologists- wants to solve this complicated problem, carrying out detailed hydro geological and hydrochemical studies, geophysical research and recognisance drilling, which will probably solve the water supply problem to at least 3000 inhabitants in the surroundings of Guaymitas (although the total population is probably near 9000 in the 20 rural communities).

Operational procedures and methodology:

The tasks which will be carried out to obtain the expected results according to the objectives are the following:

A.1. Co-ordination with the local authorities, ASIDE, local association of neighbours, etc.

A.2. Survey of the zone.

A.3. Installing a field office with the adequate technical and administrative means in El Progreso.

A.4. Compilation of all the available existing data (maps, aerial photos, ...), considering the research recently carried out by ASIDE in these rural communities.

A.5. Hydrogeological cartography.

A.6. Water wells inventory, hidrochemical and organic analysis, ...

A.7. Geophysical survey using SEV (vertical electrical soundings and/or resistivity profiles) to locate productive aquifers.

A.8. Recognizance drillings in the areas were positive results from the geophysical survey and the hydro geological research have been obtained.

A.9. Pump tests and chemical and organic analysis of the waters found in the recognizance drillings.

A.10. Construction of the exploitation water well in the area selected.

A.11. Pump tests of the exploitation well.

A.12. Protection and development of the surroundings works in order to protect the aquifer.

A.13. Training of local people to maintain the future well and to use water properly. With the collaboration of ASIDE.

A.14. Control and monitoring of the well exploitation

A.15. Final installation of the well (Pump and deposit) and water distribution which will be handled by ASIDE with our collaboration.

A.16. Signature of the well hand-over to locals.

 

Anticipated achievements and outcomes of the project:

In order to achieve the proposed aims, World Geologists will collaborate with the people of both villages, with municipal authorities and with the institutions related to the water subject (ASIDE, ...).

The co-ordinators, that will be in charge of the general execution of the project planning, will be Dr. Carlo Enrico Bravi, Delegate of the NGO in Italy and Hydrogeological Consultant, and Dr. Juan Luis García Acedo, Water Projects Coordinator for America of World Geologists and expert on Hidrogeology. The technical staff will be formed by a Hydrogeologist of World Geologists as Chief of Mission, during the 8 month of duration of the project; he will be assisted 4 months by another geologist specialist in geophysics and well drilling and 4 months by another voluntary geologist (who will be trained in humanitarian projects). We also count with the help of the NGO Help Against Hunger (Acción Contra el Hambre) which has bases in Danli and Choluteca and which will be providing drilling services and geophysical support.

As main objectives of the project we envisage:

Main objectives

O.1.1. Assure the fresh water supply to Guaymitas and its influence area (El Progreso, Yoro), North of Honduras..

O.1.2. Allow that as a consequence of the study a UNDERGROUND WATER SUPPLY PROGRAMM for several rural communities of Sula Valley and the rural communities of Guaymitas area with basic water needs can be put ahead.

Secondary objectives

O.2.1. Carry out a hydrogeological study to locate the site of the exploitation water well.

O.2.2. Establish a sanitary perimeter of protection for the well.

O.2.3. Instruct local people to maintain the water well and distribution system in order to get the best advantage of fresh water availability. ASIDE will collaborate in this subject.

Expected results are:

R.1. A detailed hydrogeological study of Guaymitas area which will be compiled in a public access memory and which might be used for future water supply works in the area or similar projects in other zones.

R.2. One well will be drilled and the appropriate pump installed.

R.3. World Geologists will collaborate with the Institutions that will carry out the water distribution system (ASIDE will obtain financial support for that system), handing over the well and instructing local people to maintain the whole water supply system.

Study of sustainability:

The municipality of El Progreso, the departmental authorities of Yoro, ASIDE and mainly the Water Patronage of Guaymitas, will compromise to guarantee the sustainability of the project, once it has been accomplished.

All this in spite of the extreme poverty of the inhabitants of these communities

Public water supply using underground water for the Communities of Sartenejas (South of Honduras)

The community of Santenejas is located 20 km south of the village of Danli, in the Paraiso department in the south of Honduras. Our Honduran counterpart, ASIDE, has carried out a poll on the water needs among 30 rural communities of the Jamastrán valley, selecting around 20 communities with urgent drinking water needs.The experts of our NGO -World Geologists- have carried out a tour through the Jamastran Valley and visited almost all communities selected according to their water needs (see attached map with the communities surveyed); we have selected one, Sartenejas, since in that place the Italian NGO Movimondi had already drilled six shallow wells, which unfortunately have already dried up (financial support of the Italian Cooperation). We have considered that since the people of the area already had drinking water supply problems and the wells constructed with Italian technical and financial support are now of no use, it would be significant that WG, financed this time by an Italian Body (The Nando Peretti Foundation), could finally solve the drinking water supply problem of the area. If enough water with an adequate quality could be obtained, the water supply problem of the La Suiza group of houses could also be solved, as these dwellings also lack water supply, due to their low income. This community is located 1500 m away from Sartenejas.

In January 1999, Movimondi-Molisv and within the ECHO-HOND-210/98/01001 project, carried out in Sartenejas a course on "Hand drilling of wells", using the EMAS technology (Mobile School of Water and Basic Drainage) with CEDA (Danlidian Educativa Consulting), They carried out six manual boreholes of small diameter (less than 50 mm) which reached a depth of 20 -25 m. In all these wells manual pumps were installed (see figure), but today the wells have collapsed. The sole water supply comes from a pipe coming from the Aguila Mountain, located 12 km SE, which was built 22 years ago by the National Agricultural Institute (INA) to supply water to El Ojo del Agua, El Matasano, El Zapotillo and Sartenejas. The population increase experienced in these last few years along its course, and the deterioration of the pipe has had as a result that water supply is only received once a week and in insufficient quantity. Women and children in these communities must walk daily an average distance of 3/7 km in order to obtain some water of acceptable quality. The most difficult problem to solve in the Jamastrán Valley is that alluvial aquifers have suffered a severe chemical pollution, both by nitrogenous fertilizers used in the cultivation of coffee and by the pesticides (lindane BHC, hexachloropropane, organophosfates and organochlorates). During the Mich Hurricane, a storehouse were this highly toxic pesticides were stored was devastated and the barrels were buried along the sediments of the Jamastran Basin. All these factors clearly demonstrate that this project is a great challenge, since it is necessary to find deep alluvial aquifers, which are not yet polluted by the dispersion of the mentioned toxic pollutants.

Operational procedures and methodology:

The tasks which will be carried out to obtain the expected results according to the objectives are the following:

A.1. Co-ordination with the local authorities, ASIDE, local association of neighbours, etc.

A.2. Survey of the zone.

A.3. Installing a field office with the adequate technical and administrative means in Danli

A.4. Compilation of all the available existing data (maps, aerial photos, ...), considering the research recently carried out by ASIDE in these rural communities.

A.5. Hydro geological cartography.

A.6. Water wells inventory, hydrochemical and organic analysis, ...

A.7. Geophysical survey using SEV (vertical electrical soundings and/or resistivity profiles) to locate productive aquifers.

A.8. Recognizance drillings in the areas were positive results from the geophysical survey and the hydro geological research have been obtained.

A.9. Pump tests and chemical and organic analysis of the waters found in the recognizance drillings.

A.10. Construction of the exploitation water well in the place selected.

A.11. Pump tests of the exploitation well.

A.12. Protection and development of the surroundings works in order to protect the aquifer.

A.13. Training of local people to maintain the future well and to use water properly. With the collaboration of ASIDE.

A.14. Control and monitoring of the well exploitation

A.15. Final installation of the well (Pump and deposit) and water distribution, which will be handled by ASIDE with our collaboration.

A.16. Signature of the well hand-over to locals.

Anticipated achievements and outcomes of the project:

In order to achieve the proposed aims, World Geologists will collaborate with the people of both villages, with municipal authorities and with the institutions related to the water subject (ASIDE, ...).

The co-ordinators, that will be in charge of the general execution of the project planning, will be Dr. Carlo Enrico Bravi, Delegate of the NGO in Italy and Hydro geological Consultant, and Dr. Juan Luis García Acedo, Water Projects Coordinator for America of World Geologists and expert on Hydrogeology. The technical staff will be formed by a Hydro geologist of World Geologists as Chief of Mission, during the 8 month of duration of the project; he will be assisted 4 months by another geologist specialist in geophysics and well drilling and 4 months by another voluntary geologist (who will be trained in humanitarian projects). We also count with the help of the NGO Help Against Hunger (Acción Contra el Hambre) which has bases in Danli and Choluteca and which will be providing drilling services and geophysical support.

As main objectives of the project we envisage:

Main objectives

O.1.1. Assure the fresh water supply to Sartenejas and La Suiza, in Jamastrán Valley, Danli, El Paraíso, South of Honduras.

O.1.2. Allow that as a consequence of the study a UNDERGROUND WATER SUPPLY PROGRAMM for several rural communities of the Jamastrán Valley with basic water needs can be started.

Secondary objectives

O.2.1. Carry out a hydro geological study to locate the site of the exploitation water well.

O.2.2. Establish a sanitary perimeter of protection for the well.

O.2.3. Instruct local people to maintain the water well and the distribution system in order to use the fresh water properly.

Expected results are:

R.1. A detailed hydrogeological study of Sartenejas area which will be compiled in a public access memory and which might be used for future water supply works in the area or similar projects in other zones.

R.2. One well will be drilled and the appropriate pump installed.

R.3. World Geologists will collaborate with the Institutions that will carry out the water distribution system (ASIDE will obtain financial support for that system), handing over the well and instructing local people to maintain the water wells.

Study of sustainability:

The municipality of Danli, the departmental authorities of El Paraiso, ASIDE and mainly the Water Patronage of Sartenejas, through its President, Mr Eugenio Llamas, will compromise to guarantee the sustainability of the project, once it has been accomplished. All this in spite of the extreme poverty of the inhabitants of these communities of the Valley of Jamastrán.

 


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