Provincial utility Amatola Water received three Blue Drop awards at the Water Institute of Southern Africa biennial conference held in Cape Town, in May.
The utility was awarded Blue Drop status for its Nahoon and Laing dams and Sterkspruit water treatment plants.
The Blue Drop award is a stamp of assurance for the general public that the quality of its drinking water is of a high standard and safe for consumption.
For a water supply system to qualify for the Blue Drop award, it must receive a total average weighting of 95% to 99% across five criteria on the scorecard.
“These include water supply planning, proper process control, an efficient water quality monitoring programme, credible water sample analysis, regular submission of water quality data to the Department of Water Affairs, infrastructure and asset management, drinking water quality compliance and response to failures,” says Amatola Water acting CEO Craig Thompson.
Further, the utility, together with the Buffalo City municipality (BCM), also received a Gold Award for the King William’s Town supply system, which supplies water to Bhisho, Mdantsane, King William’s Town and Zwelitsha, in the Eastern Cape.
BCM was acknowledged as the best-performing municipality in the Eastern Cape, with the Nahoon dam water treat- ment works (WTW) retaining its status for the third consecutive year.
“This is an impressive result and is due to hard work and a successful collaboration with our partner, the Buffalo City municipality,” says Thompson.
Joe Gqabi district municipality, also working in partnership with Amatola Water, was recognised as the third-most successful performing municipality in the Eastern Cape and received a Blue Drop award for the Sterkspruit WTW.
Water in the Eastern Cape has traditionally been characterised by waterborne diseases and cholera outbreaks. Amatola Water has undertaken infrastructure upgrades to reduce health risks and improve the quality of the drinking water it produces.