Work Completed on Innswood Artificial Groundwater System

Photo: JIS Photo A section of the artificial groundwater recharge system at Innswood in St. Catherine. The National Water Commission (NWC) says the work is complete and the project is in the pre-commissioning stage.

Story Highlights

  • The National Water Commission (NWC) says that work on the $1 billion artificial groundwater recharge system in Innswood, St. Catherine is now complete.
  • The project, which commenced 17 months ago, is now in the pre-commissioning stage and when handed over, will have the capacity to supply some five million gallons of water on a daily basis to sections of St. Catherine and Kingston.
  • Project Engineer, Aquifer Recharge at the NWC, Darian Jackson, told JIS News that the pre-commissioning involves flushing and testing of the system.

The National Water Commission (NWC) says that work on the $1 billion artificial groundwater recharge system in Innswood, St. Catherine is now complete.

The project, which commenced 17 months ago, is now in the pre-commissioning stage and when handed over, will have the capacity to supply some five million gallons of water on a daily basis to sections of St. Catherine and Kingston.

Project Engineer, Aquifer Recharge at the NWC, Darian Jackson, told JIS News that the pre-commissioning involves flushing and testing of the system.

“We have to ensure that everything is effective… for the official commissioning. We’re flushing the lines; we’re making sure that everything is laid according to specifications and carrying out infiltration tests. We are making sure that the water retaining structures can actually hold water … we’re testing everything,” he said.

The Innswood project is aimed at increasing and improving groundwater quantity and quality in the Lower Rio Cobre Limestone Aquifer of the St. Catherine plains.

This will boost potable water supply for the Kingston Metropolitan Area (KMA) and St. Catherine, particularly during periods of drought.

It involves construction of a raw-water intake structure and facility capable of treating eight million gallons per day, as well as inlet structures to two infiltration wells and three sinkholes; and installation of 2.1 kilometres of pipelines.

The facility will treat the raw water from the Old Harbour branch of the National Irrigation Commission canal through a series of settling basins, which will remove sediments, pollutants, and other particles.

This will ensure that the water is of good quality before recharging the aquifer through the series of sink holes and deep wells.

The project is being executed by the engineering firm, M & M Jamaica Limited, under the supervision of Rural Water Supply Limited (RWSL) a division of the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, with funding support from by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The Innswood facility is expected to serve as a pilot for similar projects across the island.

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