Finding wastewater solutions for Africa
29 April 2020 | Web Article Number: ME202018955
AS Governments and municipalities across Africa grapple with ways of dealing with growing wastewater requirements, it has become increasingly evident that a “one-size-fits-all” approach does not work and that differing conditions, such as sand contents, water quality and existing infrastructure, plays a large role in the specification of future pumping infrastructure requirements.
This has prompted global pump and valve manufacturer KSB to play a more active role and lend its technical expertise - through its network of regional companies, branches and dealers - in every country in the sub-Saharan Africa region, to assist wastewater entities.
Preparations to support the intensive new wastewater drive also got underway at the regional office of KSB Pumps and Valves in Johannesburg recently, when global expert, Ben Harrison, the regional application manager: MEAI KSB Global Corporate Water Department from Halle, Germany, led a two-day workshop aimed at sharing country specific information and devising ways of working with authorities to provide wastewater solutions.
“As one of the largest pump companies in the world and a major role-player in Africa, we are listening to the needs of the market and taking info from our representatives in each region to our technical department to find pumping solutions for each district. Conditions vary from Kenya to DRC, Zambia, South Africa and elsewhere in Africa and we are inviting authorities to work with us to find specific solutions that will work for them,” Harrison said.
“We want to bring international standards to local solutions and provide the kind of wastewater solutions that are affordable, durable and appropriate for the kind of maintenance and support that is available in that particular area. As a result, the purpose of the workshop was to provide resources to our regional staff that will enable them to work with local authorities to find answers to their needs.”
He said all KSB sales engineers are able to discuss requirements on equal terms with engineering teams and that they can call upon local and international expertise to find the right pumping solutions for the right job.
“In most countries and districts in Africa KSB is well entrenched as a main supplier of potable water and other fluid transfer solutions to Governments and utilities - so it makes sense to expand solutions to include more solutions for wastewater applications.”
He said now that the company has assembled its internal staff and put in simplified structures to support wastewater pumps in each region, it can be expected that it will “hit the ground running” and make significant inroads in a market that currently does not enjoy the attention of other large pump manufacturers. In South Africa, KSB also has the advantage of being a Level 1 BBBEE contributor.
“KSB has the support and expertise to support plans to deal with future wastewater requirements. We understand that expectations don’t differ by country and we assure customers that the same knowledge that is required for engineers in KSB, is the same requirement in every country.
“That means that customers are assured of receiving world class service wherever they may be, albeit in Johannesburg, Kinshasa, Nairobi or anywhere in Africa. As a customer they can expect the same outcome, the same service and support that they would receive anywhere else in the world.”
He added that sewage pumps being part of the South African production portfolio made for quick access to the regional market.