JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The National Water Sector Policy and Implementation Plan 2019 is to be tabled in Parliament soon.
  • Director, Water Monitoring, Water Policy and Monitoring Branch, Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation (Water Division), Talia Gibson, said the policy is an update of the 2014 water sector policy and embodies the Vision 2030 National Development Plan for Water.
  • Speaking at the recent Red Stripe Water Stewardship Knowledge Forum, held at The Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, Ms. Gibson said the policy seeks to address challenges in the water sector.

The National Water Sector Policy and Implementation Plan 2019 is to be tabled in Parliament soon.

Director, Water Monitoring, Water Policy and Monitoring Branch, Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation (Water Division), Talia Gibson, said the policy is an update of the 2014 water sector policy and embodies the Vision 2030 National Development Plan for Water.

Speaking at the recent Red Stripe Water Stewardship Knowledge Forum, held at The Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, Ms. Gibson said the policy seeks to address challenges in the water sector.

“The Government, in achieving its objectives, aims, goals, and to deal with several of the challenges identified in the sector, intends to adopt an integrated water resources management approach to managing our water resources. The management of our water resources is a key factor. Water is not an endless source,” she said.

Challenges in the sector include inadequate storage, inadequate infrastructure, and vulnerability to climate change, poor waste management practices, high energy consumption and high levels of non-revenue water.

The objectives of the policy are to effectively manage water supply in utility and non-utility service areas; to increase resilience to climatic shocks, such as drought; to ensure effective management of wastewater; and to encourage rainwater harvesting, both as a primary source of access and as a drought management mechanism.

Additionally, the policy seeks to provide sufficient water for achieving food security by improving irrigation services; ensure effective flood water control; and establish policy, programmes and physical structures in place for climate adaptation and energy efficiency in the water sector. The policy will also seek to facilitate private-sector participation in the water sector.

Ms. Gibson further noted that the overall aim of the policy is to provide universal access to potable water and adequate sanitation by 2030.

“In this policy, access to water means everyone should have access to at least 50 litres of water each day within 500 metres of their home. The goal of the policy is to ensure that Jamaica’s water resources are effectively managed, so as to provide for our nation’s social, economic, and environmental well-being, now and in the future,” she said.