Solvatten in Kibera

Press Release   •   Oct 21, 2010 08:37 EDT

Solvatten AB will, in co-operation with the Institute of Environment and Water, a Kenyan-based charitable trust, provide an innovative household water treatment technology in Africa’s largest slum.  The project, in Kibera, Nairobi, will secure safe drinking water for 13,000 residents.  In addition greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced and the quality of life and economic status of the residents, especially the women, will be significantly improved.

Climate change is expected to increase the frequency of extreme weather events in East Africa.  Low income urban settlements are particularly vulnerable to the impact because of poor water infrastructure and inadequate sanitation.  The result is increased incidence of gastrointestinal and diarrheal infections from contaminated water, especially during the floods and droughts. The project’s primary goal is to build local adaptive capacity for households to cope with the impacts of climate change on water quality.

The project will utilize Solvatten’s innovative yet simple solution which harnesses solar energy to heat and treat water.

The Nordic Climate Facility (NCF) promotes technological innovations and know-how partnerships on climate change in areas susceptible to climate change such as energy, transport, water and sanitation, health, agriculture, and forestry. Once a year, NCF calls for innovative proposals for specific climate change themes. The first call for proposals launched in 2009 focused on water resources and energy efficiency and attracted 138 applications. The second call will be launched in October 2010. Financing can be granted to Nordic institutions, organizations, companies, and authorities which have established cooperation with a partner in low-income countries.

A patented, scientifically proven Swedish invention, the SOLVATTEN® unit uses heat and UV from the sun, and a built-in filter, to purify contaminated water. SOLVATTEN® makes microbiologically contaminated water drinkable in 2-6 hours, depending on the weather. An indicator shows when the water is safe to drink. SOLVATTEN® is part of the WHO International Network to Promote Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage.

Providing SOLVATTEN to households will help contribute towards sustainable development, through improved living standards, improved health, protection of the environment, and by making income-generating activities possible.

The portable 10-liter unit can improve the daily lives of millions of people who do not have access to safe drinking water, thereby contributing to the realization of the Millennium Development Goals.