Statement from the BWA in response to a video currently in circulation relating to the temporary marine outfall.
There has recently been a widely circulated video purporting to show ongoing work on the South Coast’s temporary outfall, and suggesting that it is contaminating beaches and posing a public health danger to sea bathers.
The Barbados Water Authority (BWA) wishes to confirm that what is being circulated is old footage of work on the temporary outfall piping from January of this year. It does not show any work currently being undertaken on the South Coast of Barbados.
In fact, it features video footage taken when the second temporary outfall pipe (the 12” diameter pipe) was being installed in January 2019. As seen in the video, the balloons were used at that time to hold the anchors in position, while the divers finalized the placement on top of the pipe being installed.
Once again, this video does not showcase any of the work currently being undertaken by the BWA nor its contractors as part of the works associated with the South Coast Sewage Project.
Work on the temporary outfall, which comprises two mains, 8 inches and 12 inches in diameter (some of which are featured on this video), was successfully completed several months ago.
The nearshore water quality on several of the beaches along this coast is monitored by the Environmental Protection Department on a regular basis.
The results of the sampling done continue to demonstrate compliance with local and international standards, including the United States Environmental Protection Agency and Health Canada standards for recreational waters.
In addition, there is a regularly scheduled maintenance programme, which includes inspection of the entire length of pipe by divers.
Preliminary works to construct a permanent outfall have begun and continue in earnest.
The BWA wishes to categorically state that there is presently no work ongoing on the installed outfall, and that the frequent tests of the water quality of the beaches confirm that the beaches are safe for bathing.