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Drinking Water Issues in Rural Colombia

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Published on May 2, 2011

This project was done through the Global Engineering Program at Purdue University under the technical advisory of Chad Jafvert.

Access to sufficient amounts of clean drinking water is a serious problem in rural communities near Barbosa, Colombia. Because groundwater resources are not available, water for daily use in the three villages near Barbosa must be obtained from nearby surface sources and treated to remove disease-causing contaminants. Kimberly-Clark, our project sponsor, constructed a paper products manufacturing plant in Barbosa in 2008 and wishes to ensure a reliable supply of safe drinking water to the surrounding local population. For these small communities, slow sand filters (SSFs) may be a suitable means of drinking water treatment due to their simplicity, cost-effectiveness, and incorporation of locally available materials.

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