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Kenyan towns stare at increased water stress

By Godfrey Ombogo | September 8th 2016

Nearly all urban centres in Kenya, including Nairobi, have water problem.

But the problem could be worsened due to sedimentation of water sources such as dams and reservoirs, a study has shown.

The research conducted jointly by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) and Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company (NCWSC) shows that Nairobi is likely to suffer more from this predicament.

"Sedimentation can be attributed to human activities along rivers servicing the dams," said the lead investigator, Joseph Sang.

He called for targeted conservation measures to cushion the critical water installations from siltation.

The study conducted at Ruiru Dam indicates that the dam's volume had reduced by 10 per cent to 2,564,590 cubic metres, most of the loss happening over the last 20 years.

This revelation comes in the wake of continued water stress in urban dwellings, with only 40 per cent of Nairobi residents receiving water on a 24-hour basis.

Ruiru Dam, which was commissioned in 1949, supplies up to 21,000 cubic metres of water per day to Nairobi. The survey was the first among many others to be conducted.

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