5 Nov 2012

Fresh water at risk in Pacific

10:07 am on 5 November 2012

Finding solutions to waste water management in the Pacific has been the focus of this years Pacific Water Conference.

Just 24 percent of the Pacific is covered by a sewer system, coverage that the Pacific Water and Waste Association says is significantly low.

The regional director of engineering consultancy company Woods Pacific, Jack Out, says the problem is significant because the Pacific is so dependent on its coastal environment for food and travel.

"Pollution of that environment will destroy their community, high water tables, climate change, rising ground water levels, when you pollute those and you're using your ground water sources for fresh water, for drinking water, when you contaminate those with your drinking water, your community can get sick, you can destroy you water source and that sort of thing."

Jack Out says that could lead to looking for expensive solutions to getting fresh water where it's not necessary.

He says there is a need for technologies and solutions appropriate to the region, that are simple to implement, and cost effective to maintain.