WASHINGTON – U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary, Insular and International Affairs, Doug Domenech is pleased to announce that a team of water treatment engineers from the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) will be in the Republic of Palau for two weeks beginning February 7, 2020, to assist the Palau Public Utilities Corporation. Supported by funding from the Office of Insular Affairs, their work will include assessing the existing conditions at sixteen water treatment facilities throughout Palau.
“Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, when representing President Trump at the Pacific Islands Forum in Tuvalu announced this water project,” said Assistant Secretary Domenech. “This is another example of the Administration’s commitment to the people of Palau and the importance of the relationship between the United States and Palau under the Compact of Free Association.”
“The Bureau of Reclamation has a long history of sharing its water expertise throughout the world,” said Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman. “I am excited for our engineers to work with the people of Palau to help them assess their water treatment challenges.”
Funding for this project was provided through the Office of Insular Affairs (OIA) and first announced in October 2019. Similar water and utility projects will also be supported in the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of the Marshall Islands with expertise and support from the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. More information on these projects may be found on the OIA website at https://www.doi.gov/oia/press/interior-and-epa-leverage-funding-and-expertise-support-clean-water-and-utility-efficiency.
U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary David Bernhardt announced this project at the Pacific Islands Forum Partners Dialogue in Tuvalu last August as part of the U.S. Indo-Pacific strategy in the Pacific. More information is available at https://www.doi.gov/oia/press/interior-secretary-bernhardt-and-us-delegation-conclude-trip-pacific-islands-forum.
For more information about the work of the Office of Insular Affairs, visit www.doi.gov/oia or follow on Twitter @ASIIADomenech.