The Central Water and Sewerage Authority, on Wednesday, said it is now no longer able to supply over 50% of its customers with water 24 hours a day, seven days a week, as is usually the case.

“In St. Vincent, for the first four months of the year, all five of the CWSA’s major water systems have, on average, experienced rainfall amounts totalling 40% below the 10-year average,” Garth Saunders, chief executive officer, of the CWSA said in a press statement.

“Rainfall for April was 60% below the average monthly figure, while rainfall for the current month of May has fallen from 248mm in 2019 to just 48 mm in 2020,” Saunders said.

“At present, the CWSA is operating at 35% of its capacity at these five sources,” he said.

Saunders said that St. Vincent and the Grenadines is in the midst of one of its worst droughts in recent history.

The drought conditions continue four days before the official start of the 2020 hurricane season,  next Monday, June 1, and even as two named storms have already formed.

“From a regional perspective, the Barbados Meteorological Services has reported that the drought conditions being experienced so far, are the worst in 72 years and international experts have indicated that the low rainfall totals are expected to continue into 2020,” Saunders said.

Two weeks ago, the severe water shortage prompted the declaration of a water emergency in St. Lucia and a prediction of a rainfall deficit into August.

Saunders said the CWSA has now joined its neighbours — Barbados, St. Lucia, Grenada and Trinidad  — in once again implementing an extended system of water rationing “to try, as far as possible, to achieve an equitable distribution of water during a 24-hour period”.

Saunders said that the CWSA would continue to communicate its water rationing schedule to the public via radio and on its Facebook page.

“The CWSA further wishes to advise that, given the unpredictability of water use and the continuing reduction in river flows, that there is no guarantee that the CWSA may always meet the scheduled times for turning on and off of the supplies. Customers are therefore asked to store sufficient water at their homes to cater for this inconvenience.

“The CWSA appreciates the understanding of its customers and looks forward to a gradual improvement in rainfall patterns and water supply in the coming weeks,” the statement concluded.

7 replies on “CWSA no longer able to supply water 24/7 to 50% of customers”

  1. Gersham Alexander says:

    It’s really appalling. CWSA has no excuse for this situation. The CWSA should have been working along with the forestry department, over the years, to maintain the water sheds. Poor water shed management is what has caused the situation to escalate. When was the last time trees were replanted in any of those areas? The management needs to wake up.

    1. Urlan Alexander says:

      Are you saying that the regional drought is a result of inactions by the CWSA in SVG.? Stop chatting foolishness.

  2. Everything that happens in SVG is Biblical.

    A tropical-storm will come and replenish the water supplies.(right?) But, If you need a Fresh-water plant build one. if you need a highway build one. If you need bottled water build a factory. It’s as simple as that.

    You could be importing water from Dominica soon when your water systems fail.

    The government has mismanaged everything in SVG right down to the water. Water is one of the most if not the most important resource a country has.

    Now less fortunate people will suffer some more as a consequence.
    With all this hardship going around it is hard to see that a change will come but it will.

  3. Emmanuel St. Croix says:

    I am from Saint Lucia. I agree with you 100%. We need to plant trees. We need to increase our water shade areas.

  4. The government of SVG has nothing to do with the drought conditions experienced throughout the entire Caribbean. Global warming has contributed to increasing global temperatures causing longer dry periods and more intense rainy periods. Climate data available for Saint Vincent has already shown that temperatures have progressively increased in the last 10 years. The problem is the same in all the neighboring water authorities and all have resorted to rationing of water. How can you blame the government for a drought? Will you then blame the governments of Barbados, Grenada, Saint Lucia and Trinidad also? Don’t make this political because it’s not. Nor should any blame go toward the CWSA management or staff who have worked tirelessly to manage the little water there is. The CWSA operations and maintenance Staff work from 730 am till 8 pm as well as weekends. There are CWSA staff that leave home at 4 am to open and close valves in the water distribution system in order to supply the public in the morning and afternoon while trying to preserve what little water remains in tanks.

  5. Leonard Nero says:

    Am not living at home presently but when I was there, Svg had 3 Hydro power plants, they’re essential but have we ever looked at how these plants are draining the Water supply. These Plants uses millions of gallons of water per day,the water supply is in the heart of the mountains, where does the water ends up after turning the Turbines, can the water be used again rather than going to sea.
    Something ought to be done and quickly.

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