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Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Horace Chang, has said that the Ministry was looking at putting a structure in place to facilitate the harvesting of rain water for domestic use.
“I have already drafted policy documents that will look at encouraging in certain areas, the use of rain water for domestic purposes, and allow the expensive treated water to be used for commercial purposes,” Dr. Chang stated.
He was speaking at the official commissioning of the Braco to Runaway Bay Water Supply Project on Thursday (March 5), at the Puerto Seco Beach Park in Discovery Bay, St. Ann.
According to Dr. Chang, with the challenges of climate change, “rain water harvesting has to become a part of the normal thing and the Government has to find a way to assist, to guide and to ensure that you have it done properly.”
He said that such a venture would not only target “those poor persons in the hills” but all areas, and “incentives would be provided for people to begin to look at rain water harvesting”.”It is something that we will certainly have to do because as we expand the water supply system, we want to ensure that everybody has good quality water and it is going to take many years and money,” he pointed out.
In the meantime, Dr. Chang informed that during the course of this year, the Ministry would be seeking to educate people about the importance of protecting water supply systems and the need to pay their bills.
“If everybody in Jamaica pays their water bill, then we can keep the rates low for a long time,” he stated.The Braco to Runaway Bay Water Supply Project, was carried out under the North Western Parishes Water Supply Programme, which seeks to provide an adequate water transmission and distribution network extending from Braco in Trelawny along the coast to Runaway Bay in St. Ann.
The US$17 million project involved the laying of more than 23 kilometres of transmission and distribution lines extending from Braco to the verge of the highway in Runaway Bay, and the construction of a 500,000-gallon tank above Rio Bueno in Trelawny.

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