January 3rd, 2014 (InsideCostaRica.com) Three quarters of raw sewage in Latin America is dumped completely untreated into rivers and other water sources, creating serious problems for public health and the environment, experts from the World Bank warn.
Experts warned that the situation should be taken especially seriously in Latin America, one of the most bio diverse regions in the world and one that possesses at least a third of the world’s water resources.
In Costa Rica, less than 1% of sewage and wastewater in the Greater Metropolitan Area of San José is treated, though that should change in May 2015 when a new sewage treatment plant currently under construction will reduce the amount of raw sewage dumped directly into several rivers in the capital city.
The plant, which is being constructed by the Costa Rican Institute of Aqueducts and Sewers (AyA), will process sewage from residents of Tibás, Moravia, Goicoechea, Coronado, Montes de Oca, Desamparados, Escazú, Alajuelita, and the canton of San José. In total, the plant will process sewage from slightly more than one million residents.
Currently, most of this sewage is dumped directly into several rivers, such as the Tiribi, María Aguilar Rivera, Torres, and Virilla rivers.
The total cost of the project – which includes upgrading and replacing metro-area sewers – is reported at $344 million USD. The plant itself will cost $45 million.