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How to solve the water shortage in Nairobi and other parts of the country


Date Posted: 3/28/2018 10:58:45 AM

Posted By: Musuwi  Membership Level: Silver  Total Points: 192

For a very long time Kenya has been facing water shortages. This problem has become even worse with increasing levels of global warming all around the world. If nothing is done, the problem is expected to worsen in the near future.

This problem has made Kenyans to suffer in so many ways. First, Kenyans especially in Nairobi have been forced to buy water from vendors at very high prices. In some places in this beautiful capital of Kenya,a 20 litter jerrycan of water was being sold at 100 shillings before the start of the rainy season. This has forced Kenyans to spend a lot of money on water raising the cost of living. It is sad because already the cost of living in Kenya is very high, this only makes things worse for Nairobians.
Also the cost of electricity has increased because of the inadequate water in pumping stations especially before the start of the rainy season. Other than just the cost of electricity increasing there has been an increase in blackouts across the country. This affects small scale businesses which fully depend on electricity and lack backup generators. Many businesses are forced to close and this makes them to incur huge losses forcing them to eventually shut down. These are only some of the problems caused by water shortages there are many more.

The major places which face water shortages are Nairobi and to be specific Eastlands, Donholm, Huruma, Mathare,Kahawa, Roysambu, Githurai 44 and many other places. Other towns are Nakuru, Turkana, Kajiado, Isiolo, Mombasa to mention but a few.

During this rainy season people have forgotten after this the drought period is approaching. Huge amounts of water

are just left to flow away and during the dry season we start complaining due to inadequate water supply. It is time to solve and eradicate this problem once and for all.
If we take for example Israel, it is an arid country but never experiences water problems. We should ask ourselves what is it that Israel is doing that we Kenyans are not doing? First Israel treats and reuses waste water. After flushing the toilet or taking a shower the water is not just left to flow away, it is collected,treated and used to water plants. Also sewage water from households is collected,treated and then reused. Most of the treated water is used in irrigation and this helps to create more water available for use.
Also, although Israel is a dry land, the government has financed digging of deep wells which makes the country to fully utilize its underground water. This is really good as the government is utilizing every little available water for the sake of its citizens.
Another thing is that leakages are fixed early enough to reduce wastage of water through leakages.
Another important thing is that Israel has started using drip irrigation method and abandoned the flood method which was being used earlier. Drip irrigation is not like flood where the whole farm is flooded with water, in this the water is irrigated directly at the plant root reducing water loss. This method saves 25%-75% of water as compared to flood irrigation.

The Kenyan government has not done enough to solve this water problem. The government should emulate what Israel has done. It is shocking that Israel is more arid than Kenya but Kenya is facing a water crisis and Israel is not facing such problems. The government should put in place what the Israelites are doing. First,in Kenya,many households have constructed septic tanks in their homes. This is where water from the bathroom,kitchen,toilet and other areas is directed into. In these tanks the waste water just sinks into the ground a practise which should be rectified. From each and every households, sewage lines should be constructed and the used water directed to special government tanks for treatment. After treatment it should be redirected to farms for irrigation just like Israel and this will increase the amount of water available for usage.

In terms of boreholes, many have been dug in Kenya but still a lot needs to be done. In the semi arid regions like Turkana and other North Eastern regions of the country, more boreholes need to be dug to increase the amount of water in those regions. This will make water more available to citizens and reduce the long walks in search of water for them and also their livestock. This should be financed by the county governments in the respective counties.

Another major problem that needs to be rectified immediately is the repairing of leakages. For example in Mumias, I witnessed an incident where a pipe burst took five days to repair. Water kept flowing out for five consecutive days one can imagine how many litters of water was lost during this period. I witnessed this and I am sure these cases are so common across the country. This makes the country to lose a lot of water and this impacts negatively on the country's water capacity. The involved departments should act fast to repair leakages and repair them immediately. Also residents should play a major role in reporting leakages immediately to the involved departments for fast repair to avoid a lot of water being wasted.

Also during this rainy season a lot of water should be harvested and stored to be used during the dry season. Also farmers should start using irrigation to water their crops to reduce dependence on the rain. With global warming increasing, the amount of rainfall is expected to reduce and also a change in the rainfall patterns is expected. Farmers should start using irrigation to ensure continuous production of crops. Drip irrigation should be employed and not flood irrigation to ensure little amounts of water is used.

The government should fully finance and lead the way to increasing water available for use in the country to end this water Shortage once and for all. All this should start by protecting water catchment areas that is protecting our natural forests from exploitation by people. Most of our forests like Mau are experiencing a major reduction in the number of trees. Mau is one of the largest catchment areas which serves as a source of many rivers which provide water to many people in Kenya thus should be protected.

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