WASHINGTON, DC, Oct. 2, 2009 -- The first chlorination system designed for cities in poor countries is now operating in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, announced Andrew Weiss at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) meeting in New York last week. "It's a great success," said Weiss.
"Installed on 150 public water tanks in Haiti's capital city, our chlorination system in supplying 400,000 residents with clean, safe water. This is the first time Haitians have had access to clean water for cooking and drinking," commented Weiss, a board member of the group which installed the chlorinators.
Andrew Weiss received a certificate of recognition for International Action from former President Bill Clinton at the CGI meeting on September 25. Weiss was joined onstage by six other non-governmental groups including Partners in Health, FONKOZE, and Habitat for Humanity International, all, "who have done some extraordinary work in Haiti."
Clinton said, "I am serving the next two years as a US Special Envoy to Haiti...This is the best chance in my lifetime that Haitians have ever had to escape the chains of their past..." The former President added, "If Haiti pulls out of this it will be in no small measure because of the efforts of non-governmental organizations."
Weiss described the clean water system as a two-foot tube holding 20 tablets of chlorine through which water passes into a neighborhood water tank. Simple test kits allow the local operator to measure how much chlorine is dissolved and to regulate the flow.
"This is a neighborhood system," said Andrew Weiss, "simple enough to be run by local groups and sophisticated enough to clean the water for 10,000 users. A twice-larger version of the chlorinator can make water safe for 50,000 people. We have several of the larger chlorinators operating in Port-au-Prince and more than 100 of the smaller ones."
"International Action hopes to distribute this clean water system to cities in Asia, Africa and Latin America," said Weiss. "Currently, no one else has a system to treat urban neighborhood water tanks in poor countries, and our system is designed for this purpose.
"The tablet chlorinators will become a major breakthrough technology in public health," predicted Weiss. "Waterborne diseases - cholera, typhoid, hepatitis, and chronic diarrhea - are the major cause of infant and child mortality today. Our chlorine kills these disease germs in water," he stated.