DuPont funds groundwater treatment solution for rural South African community

A multi-technology solution supported by DuPont Water Solutions will provide a reliable source of safe drinking water for 500 households.

DuPont Water Solutions has announced a partnership with Kusini Water, the City of Mbombela Municipality and the U.S. Embassy on a new project that will leverage solar power to extract and purify groundwater in the rural community of Cairn site farm in South Africa. The new multi-technology water treatment plant, leveraging DuPont-donated technology and funded in part by a DuPont global community impact grant, will soon supply safe and clean drinking water for 500 households that currently lack access to an adequate water supply.

“This year, World Water Day is focused on the power of groundwater and how this precious resource can be a lifeline for communities across the world,” said Thembi Thulare, business development manager, DuPont Water Solutions. “DuPont Water Solutions is continually pioneering innovation to develop the technology to expand access to drinking water. Now, through our partnership with Kusini Water, the community of Cairn in Mbombela will be able to harness local groundwater supplies, to provide a reliable and sustainable supply of clean and healthy water for residents and businesses.”

Cairn, a rapidly-expanding community on the outskirts of Mbombela, is currently reliant on waiting for rainwater or water deliveries by tanker every few weeks — both of which are insufficient to meet their needs.

“Such a Partnership with DuPont Water Solutions has contributed immensely to the City’s mandate to ensure the provision of water to ALL its communities in a sustainable manner; in line with the Provincial Growth & Development Strategy to supply the entire Region with potable water at an industry accepted standard in fulfilling the constitutional obligation,” said Wendy Tshawe, the General Manager of Water & Sanitation for the City of Mbombela.

The solar-powered solution will extract groundwater from a borehole for treatment, providing a sustainable source of water for the community. The accompanying Kusini Water Box and Kiosk will use ultrafiltration membranes from DuPont and an ultraviolet light system to remove contaminants from the groundwater, ensuring a supply of up to 10,000 liters per hour of clean and healthy water. The DuPont Ultrafiltration membrane is an ultimate barrier to suspended particles including bacteria, viruses and colloids. Ultrafiltration ensures affordable, reliable and safe drinking water.

Delivered in partnership with Kusini Water, and the City of Mbombela Municipality, this introduction of a sustainable source of clean water will provide further indirect benefits to the local economy, including supporting the creation of two new jobs to operate the system.

“This year we have an aim to expand our water supply to five million people by 2025,” said Murendeni Mafumo, CEO of Kusini Water. “Our partnership with DuPont is our most important partnership and the community of Cairn is so close to our hearts as we further increase our impact. We are proud to expand our partnerships with The Beverage Association of South Africa and US embassy in training the community to operate the system.”

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