The Liberian government agency, Millennium Challenge Account-Liberia (MCA-L) has completed the construction of the 48-inch 5-km Monrovia raw water pipeline from the dam of Mt. Coffee Hydropower Plant to the White Plains Water Treatment Plant in Rural Montserrado and then to Monrovia city.
This pipeline is meant to boost quality water supply to about 1M people in Monrovia, helping to address the West African country’s post-war perennial limited access to safe drinking water by close to 90% of the country’s population.
Owned by the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC), the US$ 18M pipeline will utilize gravitational force, instead of an electric pump, to pull water into the treatment plant from the St. Paul River, saving LWSC approximately US$780,000 a year in electricity costs.
The project was financed by the US government agency, Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) under the United States Government Compact with Liberia.
The project’s impact on Liberia’s economy
The raw water pipeline project is not only boosting quality water supply and cutting down on LWSC expenditure but it has also impacted the economy of the local community. The project has reportedly employed 114 people, with 79 coming from the surrounding communities of White Plains and Harrisburg.
As part of the MCA-L mandate of promoting gender and social inclusion, 21 percent of the workers hired by Denys, one of the contractors that completed the final connection of the water pipeline alongside LWSC engineers, are women – a much higher percentage than the industry standard of under 10 percent.
Furthermore, the MCA-L also compensated all the 55 persons whose properties fell within the right of way of the Raw Water Pipeline project, based on the extent of the impact on the affected assets (crops, land, and structures).
“The compensation process ensured fairness and protection of the most vulnerable, including women and children, by ensuring that funds were divided equally between husbands and wives,” stated MCA-L on a release issued in July this year.