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Waist Deep in the Big Muddy

Denpasar's Badly Polluted Rivers Produce the Water that Flows Through the Tap of Bali's Capital.

(9/20/2008) NusaBali reports that Denpasar's rivers are badly polluted by household and home-industry contaminants rendering the waters that flow through the Island's capital unfit for human consumption for even such basic uses as bathing.

The Director of the Municipal Water Company for Denpasar, Putu Gede Mahaputra, confirmed that recent testing carried out by the Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty of Bali's Udayana University have shown Denpasar's rivers to be badly contaminated. Baliís capital is home to two rivers Ė Tukad Ayung and Tukad Badung with the waters of the Tukad Badung now considered too polluted for introduction to the cities water purification system.

Mahaputra said that the watered rendered from the Tukad Ayung undergoes continue monitoring after going through 7 distinct stages of processing before it can flow through the Water Utilityís customerís taps. These 7 steps separate river water from flotsam, mud, sand and particulate matter before undergoing a disinfecting process to remove potentially harmful bacteria from the water.

It currently costs the government Rp. 2,000 (US$0.22) to purify a cubic meter of water from the river. Consumers, in turn, pay only Rp. 1,000 (US$0.11) for each cubic meter of water consumed.