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Water Quality

In a working group on water quality, experts from Bremen and Durban exchanged practical knowledge on a variety of approaches to managing and verifying water quality. The exchange offered a direct benefit to partners in Durban, and gave the group members from Bremen a chance to think outside the box, gain international experience, and apply their know-how.

The aim of the working group was to develop suitable testing programmes in Durban that led to sustainable improvements in water quality. The main activity was the implementation of a measuring station in the uMhlangane River catchment area that performed continuous monitoring of water quality and quantity. In putting the new station into operation, the city of Durban needed assistance with developing training manuals and introducing the requisite operating procedures. In addition, local staff needed support with startup operations, calibration and testing, data storage setup, statistics and reporting, and designing an emergency plan. Beyond the first implementation, the working group aimed to identify suitable locations for additional measuring stations as well as other interventions that will improve water quality. Providing municipal support, the city of Durban planned to develop descriptions for potential new jobs and review the Water and Sanitation organisational chart.

Bremen experts have experience in:

  • planning and implementation of biological, chemical and physical water-quality measurements (water, sediment, biota)
  • operation and maintenance of continuous water-quality monitoring stations
  • implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive and other water-related European directives such as those on industrial emissions (IED), integrated pollution prevention and control (IPPC), and municipal wastewater treatment
  • technical aspects of water permits
  • water rehabilitation and groundwater protection
  • urban drainage and monitoring of direct discharges
  • development of sanitation plans
  • creation of water pollution warning and alarm plans
  • establishment of process planning for environmental management.

Through the working group on water quality, this experience--and the knowledge that comes with it--is available to counterparts in Durban.