Drilling a Pilot Deep Water Well in Laguna Carmen, Bolivia

Drilling a Pilot Deep Water Well in Laguna Carmen, Bolivia

After searching for two years, Mano a Mano located and purchased equipment that can successfully drill for water through hard rock to a depth of 340 meters. Working through the challenges of removing this machinery from the mine where it had been used in the Bolivian Andes and then encountering repeated road blockades during protests, we arrived in Cochabamba, drill in tow. We made needed repairs and then took advantage of a generous, unanticipated offer. An engineer who had worked with this drill volunteered to provide specialized training for our engineer and mechanics.

Mano a Mano's deep well drilling equipment.

Mano a Mano’s deep well drilling equipment.

Moving this deep well drilling equipment is a long and challenging process.

Moving this deep well drilling equipment is a long and challenging process.

The Laguna Carmen Deep Well

Taking advantage of this offer, we decided to pilot test the well drilling machine by drilling a well in the community of Laguna Carmen, which is nearby Cochabamba.

Mano a Mano staff working on the well in Laguna Carmen.

Mano a Mano staff working on the well in Laguna Carmen.

They have reached the 60 meter depth.  Our engineer estimates that there is 24 meters depth of water in the well Once the geology of the soul strategy around the well is documented, piping will be installed and soon after that, we will pump water.

In this picture, the drill has reached a depth of 60 meters in Laguna Carmen. Our engineer estimates that there is 24 meters depth of water in the well. Once the geology of the well is documented, piping will be installed and soon after that, we will pump water.

The pilot well now yields clean drinking water for about 1,800 people whose well was collapsing. They are elated, commenting that the water is “sweet and crystal clear”. We will be sending water samples from this well to the University of San Simon in Cochabamba to test for bacteria.

This pilot well project has further developed Mano a Mano’s capacity to respond to water scarcity and the resulting lack of sufficient food in this region. Soon we will proceed to the next community that we have partnered with, to drill the deep well for which we have received funding. We expect the next well to be completed in the coming months. Once completed, the new well will be tested by the same laboratory at the University of San Simon.

Mano a Mano Water Projects

This deep well is an exciting addition to Mano a Mano’s water projects. Mano a Mano seeks the most feasible means for accessing water when communities ask us to partner with them. We have constructed or improved 320 farm ponds in areas where tillable land plots are not side by side; 47 surface wells in communities that lie near banks of large rivers; and 9 large water reservoirs. We are currently dredging 83 ponds built by others, which have since filled with silt.

Ucuchi Water Reservoir, September 2018. This was Mano a Mano's first reservoir, built in 2006, and continues to provide consistent access to water for families in the community.

Ucuchi Water Reservoir, September 2018. This was Mano a Mano’s first reservoir, built in 2006, and continues to provide consistent access to water for families in the community.



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