In response to the drought that has hit the coastal area of Santa Cruz, causing the Huacas-Tamarindo aquifer to be overused, the Institute of Aqueducts and Sewers (AyA) is proposing the construction of a community aqueduct that would supply water to more than 10 affected ASADAs (rural water boards).
Yamileth Astorga, executive president of AyA, announced this project, which has an estimated cost of $15 million, by means of which they hope to benefit the ASADAs that belong to the Commission for the Sustainable Management of the Nimboyores Aquifer and Coastal Aquifers (Conimboco- Comisión para el Manejo Sostenible del Acuífero Nimboyores y Acuíferos Costeros).
“The studies have been completed. Five lots are needed for the location of tanks. It is a rather large public-community project that is for the entire coastal area of Santa Cruz. There is a main pipeline, which is what would carry the extracted water and would connect to the community aqueducts. [AyA] would give the water all together to the ASADAs and logically they will bill their users,” she indicated.
According to AyA, the water will be taken from the Nimboyores aquifer because, according to Senara, it is the only reservoir that has the capacity to supply the rest of the communities.
According to data from Senara, Nimboyores can produce up to 400 liters of water per second. However, they would allow consumption of 188 liters per second to avoid overuse. One liter per second can supply between 20 to 30 families.
In addition to this initiative, AyA will coordinate with the Ministry of Environment (MINAE) to launch a reforestation campaign with native species in areas surrounding Nimboyores to improve the performance of the watershed and in turn protect the soil from erosion.
Construction of this pipeline is expected to start in the second half of 2016.
Some of the ASADAs that will benefit directly are El Llano, Hernandez, Huacas, La Garita, Lorena, Matapalo, Potrero, Playa Grande, San Jose de Pinilla, Santa Rosa, Tamarindo and Villareal, among others.