ADB-CDIA Proposes Concrete Measures to Meet Current and Future Water Demand in Khulna City

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At the midpoint of its ongoing project preparation study (PPS) in Khulna, Bangladesh, ADB-CDIA proposed key strategies and investments to meet the current and future water supply needs of the city. It laid the groundwork for Phase 2 of the Khulna Water Supply Project (KWSP-2).

Khulna is the third largest city in Bangladesh with a population of 1.5 million in the metropolitan area. Being a coastal city, it is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

To meet the water demand in the city, Phase 1 of KWSP was completed in 2019 and resulted in the connection of 1.1 million residents to piped water supply. The Asian Development Bank and the Japan International Cooperation Agency supported the $323 million investment.

At least 400,000 residents remain unserved to date, and with the city’s rapid population growth, the Khulna Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (KWASA) sought assistance from ADB-CDIA to prepare the PPS for KWSP-2.

Through the study, KWASA aims to identify additional investments to expand its water supply provision, address widespread salinity intrusion, rehabilitate existing ground wells, improve non-revenue water (NRW) management, and enhance its institutional capacity.

Following the interim stage, ADB-CDIA completed a series of assessments, such as the projection of water demand and salinity intrusion, and the examination of existing water resources and facilities, which guided investment planning.

These studies, combined with lessons from other water supply initiatives and consultations with KWASA and other stakeholders have enabled ADB-CDIA to develop a program of investment for both the immediate (2035) and long-term (2050) horizons.

To manage water supply during the dry and high salinity seasons, ADB-CDIA recommended a composite solution using multiple sources of surface and ground waters including the implementation of a managed aquifer recharge system to enable aquifer recovery.

It also proposed a looping arrangement for the laying of a clear water transmission pipeline to meet the needs of the unserved areas’ future populations.

Toward better NRW management, it further recommended enhancing the existing SCADA system and implementing a smart consumer metering system for more efficient leak detection.

ADB-CDIA also developed an institutional and capacity development roadmap for KWASA, outlining short-, medium– and long-term strategic initiatives to enable it to efficiently fulfill its mandate while addressing current challenges and anticipating future needs.

Other studies were also conducted as part of the PPS, including a social survey and willingness to pay study, gender assessment, outline environmental and social safeguard due diligence, financial analysis, and economic analysis.

The next stage of the PPS will provide feasibility studies and preliminary engineering design reports for the priority water supply project components.


Related Article: Integrating Gender Perspectives and Social Inclusions in Water Supply Project Preparation

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