In 2012 MIYA Bahamas set out to improve the efficiency and quality of potable water service provision, and address critical sewerage needs in New Providence. This was MIYA’s first winning bid for InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB), in this region, and one they were excited to take on. Armed with a 50 million-dollar loan secured by the Government of The Bahamas from the IDB, the Water & Sewerage Corporation (WSC) selected MIYA Bahamas to perform the work of changing the face of Urban Water on the island of New Providence. The work began with an 8-month assessment of the issues plaguing the system, this study became the foundation of a targeted strategy to resolve the biggest issue for WSC and the island; non-revenue water loss.
The plan was simple, but its execution would prove to be more challenging as the company took on the task of replacing of thousands of faulty service connections; disconnecting thousands of illegal and dormant accounts; implementing a comprehensive and affordable maintenance plan and installing cutting edge equipment for monitoring and controlling the water supply. 2019 marked the 7th year of the contract and saw the company meet and surpass a series of major milestones. “One of the things we are especially proud of is the fact that we have been able to consistently meet the targets we set for each month and each year,” explained MIYA Bahamas Project Manager, Mario Tavera. “Through our plan, we were able to successfully cut water losses from 6.87 to 2.02 million imperial gallons per day and
we’re continuing the work of maintaining those levels and creating an even more shock-resistant system.” The success of the company’s island-wide improvement plans in 2019 not only significantly reduced the amount of non-revenue water loss but has also improved water pressure, and significantly improved the quality too.
“While challenges still exist, the work we do in collaboration with the WSC, is addressing some longstanding issues,” said Tavera. In addition to meeting the immediate physical needs of the island’s water system, the company has also invested heavily in the training of personnel required to maintain it. “We pride ourselves on being able to add value to the people that work with us and so we’ve focused heavily on training as a key element in our plans.” Over the 7 years in Nassau, MIYA Bahamas has trained more than 100 Bahamians, for example as certified leak inspectors. These highly trained experts work daily to detect active leaks and are also responsible for monitoring pressure points in the system as well.
“The results we’ve seen from this project have been truly unique,” Tavera noted. “This was a performance-based contract which really drove everyone involved to put their best foot forward as it were and we’ve seen tremendous results because of it.” As Miya Bahamas moves into future phases of the project, the company has set its sights on the challenging target to keep non-revenue water in Nassau no more than 2 million imperial gallons per day – meeting their 10- year goal – four years early. an improvement that will positively impact up to 250 thousand water users in and around New Providence providing
improved water pressure and quality to households across the island.