Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Good News from Iraq: 16 Oct 2007

From MNF-I, Water project to provide clean drinking water for 10,000.

FOB Echo, Iraq – In terms of size, a water project launched recently in the village of Abo Jbah in southern Iraq is just a drop in the bucket compared to other water initiatives being pursued across the country.

But the Abo Jbah project, undertaken by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, is a very big deal for the people who live in and around the village located near Diwaniyah in Qadisiyah Province.

It will provide an estimated 10,000 people with clean drinking water for the first time, according to John Hughes, a project engineer with the Qadisiyah Resident Office of the Corps of Engineers.

"There’s a need, obviously,” said Hughes, who added that the Corps is ready to move when such projects "show up on our doorstep," as this one did.

“Here in the heartland, each of these smaller projects does just as much good as a big project,” said Col. Steve Hill, commander of the Gulf Region South district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

A recent visit to the freshly landscaped site by Hughes and Hill included an inspection of the area, an exchange of greetings with a village elder, and a gift of a couple soccer balls to local children by Hughes, a veteran of 22 years service with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

The project will provide a 50 cubic meters per hour water compact unit and a six kilometer water distribution network. Work began earlier this month and is scheduled to be completed in March 2008.

The Abo Jabah project is budgeted for $392,250.