Tashkent, The Gulf Observer: President Shavkat Mirziyoyev held a meeting on Monday on improving drinking water supply and sewerage systems in the regions and planting food crops.
The issue of drinking water supply occupies a special place in the regional and social development programs implemented in our country. To ensure the quality and stability of the services provided, reducing production costs is important.
The analysis shows that today the cost of 1 cubic meter of drinking water in Tashkent is 448 soums, while in Namangan – almost 3 thousand soums, in Samarkand and Navoi – 2 thousand 600 soums.
The share of electricity in the cost of water production averages 27 percent across the country. But in Ferghana, Namangan and Tashkent regions this figure is high.
As you know, in order to expand the use of alternative energy sources, solar panels are being installed in enterprises, organizations and homes. However, water utilities, which consume 880 million kilowatt-hours of electricity per year, are not taking sufficient steps to switch to renewable sources, the meeting noted.
The head of state, having set the regional khokims the task of reducing the cost of drinking water, noted that the greatest help for this is to obtain part of the electricity consumed by water management enterprises from “green” sources.
For example, now water supply companies buy 1 kilowatt-hour of electricity for an average of 900 soums. The price of electricity produced at solar stations averages 350-400 soums, that is, more than 2 times cheaper. By attracting investors, solar panels can be installed on empty plots around hydraulic structures.
The need to replace old pumps with energy-saving analogues is also indicated.
The possibilities for revising the cost of water management projects and localizing the materials used in them are listed.
It has been determined that from now on new projects in this area will be submitted to local councils after studying them locally, receiving opinions and approval from residents. All information about how much money is allocated for the project, which company is the contractor and when it will be launched is subject to public disclosure. Thus, public control will be strengthened.
The meeting also discussed measures for planting crops in the inter-rows of vineyards and orchards.
Our country has 331 thousand hectares of orchards and 153 thousand hectares of vineyards. If you plant onions, garlic, carrots, peanuts, potatoes, tomatoes and cucumbers in the fields between the rows, this will be an additional source of saturation of markets and income for the population.
In this regard, measures are planned to plant vegetables on 92 thousand hectares by the end of the year using the “ninety days” method, providing seeds and water. Research institutes within the Ministry of Agriculture will provide scientific advice on the selection of climate-appropriate crops and agricultural practices.
It was noted that these measures are aimed at ensuring sustainable operation of the water sector and strengthening food security, and ultimately, at improving the well-being of our people.
At the meeting, reports were heard from industry leaders and regional khokims on the agenda.