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Ninety-three new projects to beat water shortage

dam
Everetou reservoir on Sunday

A new desalination unit is in the works as well as other projects, to ensure water adequacy in the wake of a looming national water shortage.

The national investment plan for water management announced on Monday has a total budget of €1.17 billion and includes 93 projects. Of these, 33 projects deemed as top priority, are already under construction.

They include water supply works, drainage of effluents and reclaimed water and irrigation works, expected to be completed by 2029.

An additional 60 projects are being planned, with start and completion dates slated between 2025 and 2030. Included are projects to strengthen water security in urban and other areas.

The national investment plan for water, being drawn up for the first time, follows a proposal by the water development department (WDD) and a decision by the cabinet, with the ministry of agriculture in charge of monitoring implementation.

The plan includes water projects by the WDD as well as other water supply and sewerage management companies.

First priority projects directly included in the investment plan include those for which there are either contractual or budget commitments and projects that will be financed by European funds/instruments (EU cohesion, recovery and resilience, agricultural and rural development funds), and any project required for compliance with the EU’s water management directive.

Second tier projects encompass improvement works for expansion of existing infrastructure and projects at an immature stage which cannot be immediately implemented.

According to the state’s permanent water policy, drinking water supply needs must met 100 per cent, and the 33 ongoing projects are slated to fulfil this need.

Projects either underway or in consideration aiming to boost drinking water supply to Nicosia, include a Vasilikos-Nicosia water project and a new Teresfanou pumping station.

In Famagusta water security is to be boosted by the “Kokkinokremmos” project, also under construction, as well as a project to limit water losses from Choirokoitia to Famagusta due to pipeline decays.

The construction of a new water reservoir in Klavdia has begun, with a capacity of 10,000 m3 to strengthen Larnaca’s water security, is expected to be completed in 2026.

Smart water meters are in the works for all municipalities, while Limassol is also to engage in an infrastructure replacement project to limit water losses through leakage.

Additionally, a new desalination unit is to be built in Moni in Limassol.

Other projects already in swing, include an upgrade to water treatment facilities to ensure water quality compliance in accordance with EU directives, and installation of an integrated monitoring and control system of the WDD network, to improve its effectiveness.

The installation of photovoltaic energy systems at water treatment and pumping stations to reduce costs and harness renewable energy, is also being planned.

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