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Reliable, low-cost maintenance handpumps are the key for sustainable rural water supply

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conference contribution
posted on 2018-02-12, 15:08 authored by Paul van Beers
In Africa, out of the 350,000 handpumps installed, on average 35% is not working; some 150,000 handpumps are disfunctional and still counting. Every day more handpumps are abandoned than new ones are installed. In areas with deeper groundwater the situation is even worse and often 4 out of 5 are not working. Governments and NGOs are trying to find solution to be more effective and to stop wasting funds. However, more people trained for doing repairs and establishing spare part supply systems, did not decrease the percentage of abandoned handpumps. Up to now, new and more sustainable technologies have not yet been considered as a possible solution to improve sustainability. This article describes the BluePump, developed by FairWater Foundation, a new handpump that has specifically been designed for long lasting & reliable operation, also for water levels up to 100m deep. FairWater promotes this new technology and uses the durable BluePump in the FairWater Foster handpump program, in which people donate to replace an abandoned handpumps in Africa with a durable BluePump.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

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VAN BEERS, P., 2011. Reliable, low-cost maintenance handpumps are the key for sustainable rural water supply. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). The future of water, sanitation and hygiene in low-income countries - Innovation, adaptation and engagement in a changing world: Proceedings of the 35th WEDC International Conference, Loughborough, UK, 6-8 July 2011, 4pp.


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