Policy Dialog Highlights Water Supply Issues and Solutions in Bali
Posted by uemindonesia on May 27, 2009
A policy dialog jointly organized by the Balifokus Foundation and the SEA-UEMA Project revealed that Bali still suffers from contagious diseases related to environmental health. The one day policy dialog held on March 2, 2009, in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia discussed options for household water treatment for urban poor communities in Indonesia. It highlighted good practices for community-based wastewater treatment in urban areas that resulted from two demonstration initiatives in Indonesia supported by the SEA-UEMA Project.
The first project, implemented by Balifokus in Denpasar, used Bio-Sand
filters (BSF) as a household water treatment for urban poor settlers in the
capital. This allows individual households to treat their own water and ensure the safety of their water supply. The second initiative is a community-based water supply system in Bandung, West Java that uses ground water. Lessons learned from these projects can help control and lessen the number of contagious diseases in Bali caused by poor water and sanitation facilities.
During the policy dialog, Zainal Nampira, Sub-director of the Health Ministry’s environmental health division, indicated that water resources and treatment are important issues in Bali. He also mentioned that the public often use low-quality water, which is the source of diseases.
Health Ministry data shows that in 2007, diarrhea caused 31 percent of deaths among babies aged 2 to 13 months. Another 55 percent of infant and toddler deaths were caused by diseases related to poor sanitation, water and the environment. “Bali still has a high diarrhea prevalence of 13 percent on average, compared to the national average of 9 percent. That’s even higher than in Maluku,” Zainal said.
The policy dialog aimed to assess good practices and experiences gained from the implementation of the household water treatment systems and how existing policies can support further dissemination of the demonstration projects.