Estonia to build EURO 1.7 m worth of water supply networks
Enefit Kaevandused, a mining subsidiary of the state-owned Estonian energy group Eesti Energia, in five years has built 50 km of water supply networks for 1.7 million Euros in oil shale in rural municipalities, which has equipped more than 150 households with water supply.
According to the conditions of the license of extraction of mineral resources, Enefit Kaevandused is obligated to build an alternative water supply for farms located in the area affected, as it is not inconceivable that mining affects the natural water regime, which could result in the decline of the water level in drinking water wells, Eesti Energia said.
"It is necessary for the safe mining of oil shale to redirect the water flowing into the mine, which can affect the water supply of farms located in the area affected by the mine. We are constantly involved with monitoring the situation and in cooperation with municipalities, have found alternative solutions to ensure that the residents of the mining area have a supply of drinking and consumption water. The finished projects in Iisaku and Illuka are a good example of cooperation between the local community and big business," Chairman of the Management Board of Enefit Kaevandused Ahti Puur said.
Puur said that each project is preceded by extensive preparatory work. "The order of carrying out work and the location of boreholes are determined in cooperation with municipalities. The depth of bore wells established by Enefit Kaevandused is up to 130 meters, the pump room is equipped with a water treatment system, which ensures a quality of water consistent with the demands of health protection."
Over 150 consumers have received clean drinking water during the projects carried out between 2012 and 2017, including the Illuka kindergarten and basic school and Illuka cultural and community center. Approximately 50 km of water supply networks and 9 bore wells have been constructed. The total cost of building the water supply networks in oil shale rural municipalities was approximately 1.7 m Euros.
After handing over the water supply systems to rural municipalities, the local government is the one to handle their management. Water supply in the rural municipalities of Illuka and Iisaku was carried out in cooperation with local government and a number of planning and construction companies.