GEP  Vol.4 No.10 , October 2016
The Need for Awareness of Drinking Water Loss Reduction for Sustainable Water Resource Management in Rwanda
Abstract: Drinking water loss or Non-Revenue Water (NRW) threatens the financial viability of water utilities and sustainable natural water resource management. However, little attention has been paid to quantitative assessment of the spatial distribution of water losses in Rwanda. Therefore, this study focused on the magnitude of water losses, the associated environmental and socio-economic consequences, as well as the potential benefits from water loss reduction in Rwanda. Based on water usage records from the Water and Sanitation Corporation (WASAC) of Rwanda, NRW was calculated for 15 WASAC branches and Provinces, from July 2013 to June 2014, by using the International Water Association (IWA) standard water balance approach. The results highlight an annual NRW of 16,502,198 or 41% of the total water produced, inducing a revenue loss of US$ 8,713,156. In 14 of the 15 WASAC water branches and all Rwandan provinces, the NRW ratios exceed the NRW threshold (10%) recommended by the American Water Works Association (AWWA). Because of the lost revenue, the water facilities may not expand quickly enough to meet the demands of the rapidly growing population. The suggested 50% reduction in NRW would provide additional 8,251,100 m3 of treated water yearly, enough to serve extra 41,925 households or irrigate 661 ha of cropland and save US$ 4,356,579, which would reduce the financial gap in Rwanda’s National Water Improvement Project by more than 24%.
Cite this paper: Karamage, F. , Zhang, C. , Ndayisaba, F. , Nahayo, L. , Kayiranga, A. , Omifolaji, J. , Shao, H. , Umuhoza, A. , Nsengiyumva, J. and Liu, T. (2016) The Need for Awareness of Drinking Water Loss Reduction for Sustainable Water Resource Management in Rwanda. Journal of Geoscience and Environment Protection, 4, 74-87. doi: 10.4236/gep.2016.410005.

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