«Laboratory studies have shown that all ground waters in Mailuu-Suu are not suitable for consumption. The only source of water is the water intake facility on Mailuu-Suu river, but it is worn out,» the Mayor of the town Nuradil Mamatov said at a meeting with representatives of IAEA and the European Union.
According to him, one of the global problems in the town is providing the population with drinking water. «There is water intake facility ten kilometers to the north of the town, which does not completely purify the drinking water. It was built in 1968. As of today, it is worn out,» Nuradil Mamatov stressed.
There are settlements nearby Mailuu —Suu, which still have no central water supply. One of such settlements is Kok-Tash village. People take water directly from the river, which flows through all the former uranium production tailing dumps.
Nuradil Mamatov told that the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) allocates about €7 million for the rehabilitation of the town’s water supply system. At least 60 percent of the sum is grant, and 40 percent is a soft loan. Currently, work is underway to select consultants and prepare documents for the tender. It is proposed to ensure access of the population to drinking water thanks to this project.
There are 23 tailing dumps with a total volume of uranium production waste of 2 million cubic meters and 13 mountain dumps with a waste volume of 1 million cubic meters on the territory of Mailuu-Suu town.
An average gamma radiation rate on the surface of tailings is 30-50 microroentgen per hour, and at anomalous sites, the indicator reaches 500 microroentgen per hour. On the territory of Kyrgyzstan, the average level of natural radiation is 25.5 microroentgen per hour.