Koror, Palau – The final year of the JICA Country Focused Training Course on “Water Sanitation Management” was held on January 16-19, 2017 at Palau International Coral Reef Center. This 3-year training course has been held annually since 2014 at the JICA Okinawa International Center followed by supplementary training programs in Palau and Pohnpei. Staff from the Palau Environmental Quality Protection Board, Palau Public Utilities Company, and the Bureau of Public Works attended the program, where they learned valuable information regarding various topics about managing different aspects of water sanitation. The goal of this training is to establish a resilient partnership between these various agencies by increasing capacity and strengthening structures for proper management on water sanitation. [/restrict]

This final component of the course was held in Palau, in an effort to educate more staff from relevant agencies, and increase deeper understanding of some practical applications and issues in water sanitation.  Some of the topics of the training held in Palau included lectures on the significance and practice of monitoring; Islands water environment and risk management; and How to record the monitoring results, report writing, sharing data, and cooperation of the managing agencies. The training also included visits to the National Landfill at M-Dock and the Sewage Treatment Plant at Ice Box as well as practical applications by performing sampling in the field and conducting water quality tests. These topics provided the participants with a better understanding of how management of leachates and sewage water should be conducted.

This training highlighted the need for monitoring of the facilities to ensure that treatment is working and using this monitoring data to capture and correct issues before they become extensive problems. Ultimately, it is the hope that the monitoring started with this training is continued through the creation of a Management Plan at each agency.

Water sanitation management is an essential factor in supporting multiple sectors such as Environment Health, Public Health, and Tourism. Proper management of water sanitation is a common goal that must be ensured to minimize and mitigate human impact on the environment and human health.

This training was made possible through the Japan International Cooperative Agency (JICA), with support from the Okinawa Environment Club.

If there are questions or concerns, please call EQPB at 488-1639/3600 or email to eqpb@palaunet.com. [/restrict]