October 20, 2021

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Algeria: Causes of lack of drinking water

# Algeria : Algeria’s 22 wilayas face worrying water pressure, and even water in the capital is being rationed. To explain the situation the authorities put forward a dam filling rate of less than 20% and justified it by the drought. However, the real reasons are elsewhere.

Algeria has been facing water pressure problems for years. However, the situation has worsened in recent months and has worsened in recent weeks. Thus, in Algiers, water is rationed and some residents stay all day without even a drop in the pipes.

If we know that 22 Vilayas in the country (Algiers, Pamer Mardes, Plita, Thibasa, Ann Defla, Media, Poura, D’Souza, etc.) are concerned about this water shortage today, the scale of the phenomenon is the problem. Capital Algiers.

Faced with this situation, in the short term, the authorities are unarmed. The only recommended solutions are the fight against waste and rationalizing the use of water resources. In view of this, car wash stations in Algiers were closed. After several weeks of disruption, the water ration has actually been done since June 26, the first since the early 2000s. Thus the capital is supplied with precious fluid to one part of the city and the other from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Day to day with each other. In fact, according to the people of Algiers, the ration of water is random and does not respond to any logic or table. Sometimes some residents go without a drop of water throughout the day.

>>> Read more: Algeria. Water scarcity and lack of liquidity: The regime is shouting a “conspiracy”

As a result, the prices of water tanks are rising and residents on the upper floors of buildings are forced to move to lower floors to fill water cans.

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Officials facing questions from citizens are trying to justify the unjust loss of water to the people by pointing out the natural causes, especially in drought. This can cause the dams to dry out and therefore water pressure. This is partly true. For example, around Algiers, the Kedara Dam provides capital with a filling rate of less than 20%. Many dams in the area are around 15%.

However, knowing that climate change and drought are data that governments should not ignore, it is only justified by the lack of expectation from the authorities. Clearly, the lack of rain does not generally explain everything in the desert country.

>>> Read more: Algeria: Water pressure, shortage and rising prices a few days before Ramadan worries citizens

There is a weakness of investments in dedicated infrastructure: dams and seawater desalination units. Thus, there is a significant shortage of dams, but rainwater can be prevented from escaping. At sea.

As for seawater desalination plants, some are now closed or not operating at full capacity due to lack of maintenance. This is the situation at the Chuck Dilata and El Magda stations, which have been closed for 2 years.

In addition, three major units were announced during the prosperous period of 2007-2014, which did not begin to operate due to lack of budget after the fall in the price of a barrel of oil in 2014. This is the status of the Foucault Station (Dipasa) 2018 to provide the country’s eastern ribs. The station has a capacity of 300,000 m3 It was initially planned in Algiers-Ovest before moving to Foca due to land issues and failed calls for tenders. If this had been done, Algiers would not have been aware of such severe water shortages.

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>>> Read more: Algiers: Increasingly spectacular demonstrations due to lack of water

Many projects in the country have been postponed following the fall in the price of a barrel of oil since 2014, as governments have halted several projects due to the severe financial crisis. Also, 3 seawater desalination units could not see daylight because the price of a barrel of black gold fell sharply that year.

Finally, there is the mismanagement of the Algerian des Eix, which produces drinking water. The fall in the price of a barrel since 2014 has made it unable to even pay its electricity bills and is pulling a heavy slate on Sonelkas. As a result, it no longer has the resources to invest and maintain its water desalination plants.

In the face of this complex situation, to prevent further escalation of tensions, authorities are announcing emergency measures and amplifying the consequences of the announcements. Therefore, with regard to emergency measures aimed at rapidly reducing water shortages in large cities, the authorities plan to divert water from some dams to other areas with high dam shortages, increase in boreholes and launch of new water supply units. Seawater removal.

>>> Read more: Algeria: Ration in the capital, water available only from 12 noon to 8 pm.

For these emergency measures, the authorities announced an envelope of 150 billion dinars, or $ 1.15 billion. These actions are not without negative consequences. In fact, by increasing drilling and accelerating deforestation in the country, the authorities will be more likely to lead the country’s groundwater with catastrophic long-term consequences, which could worsen water pressure in the coming years.

With the massive use of dewatering plants to meet 50% of drinking water needs by 2030, they are becoming the only alternative for the authorities. Four missions have been completed, three of which will provide capital Algiers, and three will be launched soon, officials in other regions of the country said. However, these stations, which were urgently notified and commissioned, are generally very small, with workloads starting at 5,000 m, starting last March.3/ Day 10,000 m3/ Day. This is very low compared to the recorded deficits in Algiers and the regions.

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>>> Read more: Algeria: In the middle of Ramadan, Algerians live with a ration of drinking water

Algeria has 11 desalination plants, 9 of which are currently operating at full capacity, with one closed and the other less than 50% of its capacity, according to officials. In fact, some units have real maintenance issues

If officials argue that many seawater desalination units will open in July and August, citizens will have to put more hands in the pocket in the future, after being thirsty for a lack of anticipatory policies from their leaders. In fact, because seawater desalination is so expensive, officials want citizens to pay the bill by arguing that it costs between 60 and 120 Algerian dinars per cubic meter of diluted water. Cost much higher than the price charged to the consumer.

>>> Read more: The Algerian Water Company was unable to pay electricity bills for its 11 desalination plants

However, officials who spend more than $ 10 billion every year on military equipment to further enrich commanders who charge substantial commissions on arms contracts can ensure that at least Algerian people have access to military equipment. Only 10% of the arms budget will be spent on drinking water, dams and desalination by investing annually!