Statement

Ministry of Communication and Works
House of Assembly
Release Date:
Thursday, 27 October 2022 - 10:05am

As most of us should be aware, the Waste Water Treatment Plant at Burt Point suffered substantial damage during the passage of Hurricane Irma in 2017 and was eventually inoperable at a later point thereafter.

The Waste Water Treatment Plant is critical to the overall sewerage in the Road Town area, as this is the component within the system to treat to a tertiary level all the influent and subsequently discharge thereafter the effluent at the outfall line at Slaney.

To remedy this serious situation, the Government of the Virgin Islands, via the Ministry of Communications and Works, recently signed a contract with BiWater International Limited in the amount of Two Million Five Hundred and Ninety-Four Thousand Three Hundred and seventeen Dollars and Eighty-Six Cents ($2,594,317.86) to repair the Waste Water Treatment Plant at Burt Point. This contract was signed in August 2022, and the contractor subsequently received a mobilization payment in September 2022.

The contractor – BiWater International Limited, is currently acquiring all the required materials and equipment necessary for replacing the damaged components for subsequent shipment to the Virgin Islands. Madam Speaker, it is anticipated that all the long lead material and equipment will be shipped by January for the commencement of physical works on-site. It is further expected that the Waste Water Treatment Plant will be fully repaired and commissioned by May 2023.

Madam Speaker, my ministry is also working diligently on developing a tender document to coincide with the repair and commissioning of the plant for an experienced company to manage, operate and maintain the Waste Water Treatment Plant for a period of seven (7) years.

Due to the critical nature of the plant, it is necessary to have an experienced company operate the plant, with one of the key components being that they would be required to train Water and Sewerage Department personnel as identified to maintain the plant during the course of the seven-year period.

Further, Madam Speaker, this company, which will be expected to manage the plant, will be required to undertake an apprenticeship programme where young and interested persons in this particular field can be identified, groomed, and subsequently supported through a scholarship opportunity via the Government of the Virgin Islands to become qualified plant operators and technicians so that we can build the capacity to effectively manage and maintain our wastewater infrastructure.

Madam Speaker, my ministry and I have recognized that with the coming on-stream of the Burt Point Plant, the recently commissioned Cane Garden Bay Waste Water Treatment Plant, and the soon to be repaired Paraquita Bay Waste Water Treatment Plant that it is important that we not only have fully functioning Plants but that our people, particularly our young persons can be identified, trained, educated and developed to manage and operate these critical plants and equipment.

It is for that reason, Madam Speaker, that we have allowed for a seven years period to engage the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, and Sports, the H.L. Stoutt Community College, and other institutions, whereby interested persons can be identified, educated and then trained to manage these Plants.

Madam Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to give an update on the Burt Point Waste Water Treatment Plant.

Author

Department of Information and Public Relations (GIS)

354 James Walter Francis Drive
RJT Edifice Building, 5th Floor
Road Town, TORTOLA VG1110

Tel: 284 468 2730
Fax: 284 468 2750
Email: gis@gov.vg