Dushanbe gets clean water

Yang Jie, August 20, 2009



Residents of the Tajik capital Dushanbe have one less thing to worry about these days. Thanks to a World Bank-sponsored initiative, the city's water system now provides clean drinking water, where once the taps ran brown.

Hurbi Safarova used to enlist her grandchildren's help to lug gallons of water up to her apartment. But even after boiling it, she would not use it for baby formula, and hesitated to even let the older children drink it.

Charos Mirzomahmoudova, Dushanbe resident, said, "Before, when the water was murky, we didn't allow the children to drink it, and before, doctors were going door-to-door warning people not to drink it."

Dushanbe, with help from the World Bank, now provides clean water to 75 percent of its residents. Much of it comes from this reservoir just outside the city.

Workers test the system several times a day.

It also cuts down on water-borne illnesses. Typhoid outbreaks are less common, which is important in a city where much of the population is under the age of 15, and particularly vulnerable.

The next project for Dushanbe's authorities is to pipe fresh clean water into the apartments of the remaining 25 percent of the city that still goes without.