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Warning over Aradippou water supply being contaminated

File photo: the waste treatment plant at Koshi

MPs on Tuesday warned that the Koshi waste management facility may be contaminating the water supply in the Aradippou area.

The issue was brought up at the House agriculture committee, with deputy chairman and Akel MP Andreas Pasiourtides saying MPs had “received complaints from farmers in the Aradippou region” about the matter.

“Among other things, we have received complaints that water in the river had been contaminated,” he said.

He added that the facility’s management company had admitted to a fault in one of the water pipes which was leaking liquid waste.

“What came out in today’s meeting, despite the fact that this particular problem was immediately corrected, is the failure to inform the competent authorities when the incident occurred, and the lack of a binding protocol with penalties or consequences in cases of non-compliance to what the operator of any plant should do in the event of such incidents,” he said.

He noted the sheer amount of waste being received at Koshi, saying it is equivalent to “half of Cyprus’ waste”, and said that any facility managing this much waste must be bound to a clear health and safety protocol.

Koshi’s waste management centre receives 150 bin lorries per day and 270,000 tons of refuse per year.

“Such incidents, no matter how quickly they are resolved, can cause very serious problems of water contamination. They can also damage the subsoil, which in many cases may not be completely restored,” he said.

He added that the matter should be referred to the relevant minister.

Disy MP Prodromos Alambritis said he had made an official request to the Water department to conduct examinations of the water at the State Laboratory.

He added that Aradippou is “a particularly sensitive area with farms”, and also pointed out the existence of a dam in the region and warned against the prospect of water in the reservoir being condemned with landfill refuse.

“We are asking for the correct controls to be undertaken by the competent departments, both the Water Department and the Environment Department, and that they inform parliament about the controls they undertake,” he added.

It was also heard that proposals for a new waste management site, which is hoped will ease the burden on Koshi, will be ready in two years.

Once the proposals will be ready, works will begin for a new waste management facility to open.

Aradippou Mayor Evangelos Evangelides said “this is a question for [the whole of] Cyprus, since refuse from Nicosia, the Famagusta district, and Larnaca comes to the Koshi waste management facility.

“They have a busy schedule there, but they are managing the waste, and hopefully in two years’ time we will be on the right track,” he added.

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