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|Title: ||Chemical drinking water quality in Ghana: Water costs and scope for advanced treatment|
|Authors: ||Rossiter, Helfrid M.A.|
Owusu, Peter A.
MacDonald, Alan M.
|Issue Date: ||2010|
|Citation: ||Rossiter, H.M.A. ; Owusu, P.A. ; Awuah, E. ; Macdonald, A. ; Schäfer, A.I. (2010) Chemical Drinking Water Quality in Ghana: Water Costs and Scope for Advanced Treatment, The Science of the Total Environment, 408, 2378–2386.|
|Abstract: ||To reduce child mortality and improve health in Ghana boreholes and wells are being installed across
the country by the private sector, NGOs and the Ghanaian government. Water quality is not generally
monitored once a water source has been improved. Water supplies were sampled across Ghana from
mostly boreholes, wells and rivers as well as some piped water from the different regions and analysed
for the chemical quality. Chemical water quality was found to exceed the WHO guidelines in 38% of
samples, while pH varied from 3.7 to 8.9. Excess levels of nitrate (NO3
-) were found in 21% of the
samples, manganese (Mn) and fluoride (F-) in 11% and 6.7%, respectively. Heavy metals such as lead
(Pb), arsenic (As) and uranium (U) were localised to mining areas. Elements without health based
guideline values such as aluminium (Al, 95%) and chloride (Cl, 5.7%) were found above the
provisional guideline value.
Economic information was gathered to identify water costs and ability to pay. Capital costs of wells
and boreholes are about £1200 and £3800 respectively. The majority of installation costs are generally
paid by government or NGO, while the maintenance is expected to be covered by the community. At
least 58% of the communities had a water payment system in place, either an annual fee/one-off fee or
“pay-as-you-fetch”. The annual fee was between £0.3-21, while the boreholes had a water collection
fee of £0.07-0.7/m3, many wells were free. Interestingly, the most expensive water (£2.9-3.5/m3) was
brought by truck. Many groundwater sources were not used due to poor chemical water quality.
Considering the cost of unsuccessful borehole development, the potential for integrating suitable water
treatment into the capital and maintenance costs of water sources is discussed. Additionally, many
sources were not in use due to lack of water capacity, equipment malfunction or lack of economic
resources to repair and maintain equipment. Those issues need to be addressed in combination with
water quality, coordinated water supply provision and possible treatment to ensure sustainability of
improved water resources.|
|Keywords: ||Chemical water quality|
|Appears in Collections:||Membrane Technology Research Group publications|
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