Bipi island water plant produces 4,000L per day

Islanders in Bipi, Manus Province now have access to six solar powered saltwater desalination plant sites that produces 120L of fresh drinking water per hour from beach wells.

This Pacific Environment Community Fund project is the first of its kind in the country that aims to ensure islanders have access to a sustainable and reliable water supply system.

Six solar powered desalination plants have been successfully installed and commissioned on Bipi which produces a total water capacity of 720L per hour.

“That’s equivalent of 4,320 litres per day of fresh desalinated drinking water,” says Project manager Tom Anayabere.

Anayabere said Physical checks, tests and commissioning was conducted by himself, the Manus Technical Services Engineering and Sojitz, the Japanese contracted engineers (Toray).

A forming signing of the Acceptance Completion letters for each plant and hand over of site and plant keys to the ward Councillors was done on Nov 5.

He said the Sojitz contracted Toray engineers have since moved from Bipi Island to Mbuke island and have started installation works.

Delivery of the portable desalination plants for Nauna, Mal and Aua islands will be done in the first week of January 2016.

“Operation and Maintenance training of the operators will be conducted in Lorengau on Nov 30. A total of eight portable plants are expected to be distributed between Nauna, Mal and Aua islands,” Anayabere added.

Manus Province, is paving the way for similar projects to be implemented for other atoll islands affected by the effects of climate change, resulting in the rise of sea level and thereby affecting their source of drinking water.

(Pictured is one of the Desalination plants on Bipi Island. Pictures supplied by Tom Anayabere. ) 

Sally Pokiton