The Effects of Intermittent Supply on Water Distribution Networks

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

The world’s population is increasing at a tremendous rate, the world’s renewable water resources are reducing rapidly, the gap between supply and demand is widening with urbanisation and climate change making it even wider. This paper reviews how the Water Board of Lemesos, Cyprus, a water utility with a proven history of managing extremely well its distribution network, was forced due to water shortage conditions to have intermittent supply, providing water 3 times a week for about 12 hours each time. Although intermittent supply is perhaps the last measure to be taken in conditions of water shortage, it is however a situation worthwhile avoiding through proactive planning and timely response to critical conditions. The adverse effects of intermittent supply on customer service and on the integrity of the distribution network, increase in number of bursts and leakage, as well as the financial repercussions to the utility are also discussed based on the experiences gained from the intermittent supply measures taken during the water shortage periods faced by the Water Board in the last twenty years.

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