Trinidad and Tobago is one of the most industrialized countries within the Caribbean region as a consequence of the country’s oil and natural gas resources. Oil production began in 1908 and peaked in the 1960s initiating rapid economic growth between 1974 and 1981. As a result of this oil production, Trinidad and Tobago became quickly industrialized with adjacent expansions in the manufacturing and agriculture industries. The result of this fast paced development was an increased demand for an industrial and domestic water supply.
The Water and Sewerage Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (WASA) is responsible for providing a reliable water supply and effective wastewater collection and treatment to the population. WASA through the Water Resources Agency manages the country’s natural water resource through regulation of water abstraction, watershed protection and surface/groundwater quality and hydrological/hydrogeological assessments. Within the Water Resources Agency, the water planner, engineer, hydrologist and hydrogeologist is responsible for data acquisition, data analysis and data interpretation. Numerical modeling, multi-criteria analysis, algorithms and other technologies are used to manage and analyze national water resources. There are multiple software solutions that cater for each of these functions but few that can combine the applications especially when managing water resources on a national scale and over two different islands.
Waterloo Hydrogeologic is working closely with WASA to create a National Water Resources Information Management System (NWRIMS) for Trinidad and Tobago. A key component of the system is user-friendly, fully-integrated Waterloo Hydrogeologic desktop and web-based hydrogeological/hydrological software, including Visual MODFLOW Hydro GeoAnalyst, AquaChem and HydroManager. Overall the project is expected to enable the Agency to achieve its objectives more efficiently and accurately because the data are easier to manage, peruse and view reports, tables, graphs, maps, boreholes logs, and cross-sections.
Specific benefits of the system include enabling multiple users to access the data on one centralized database in comparison to separate hardware components storing different versions of the same data sets, and occasionally losing data because of hard-drive crashes, employee turnover, and poor data tracking processes. All documents, reports, and data types will now be stored on the NWRIMS. The NWRIMS also provides enhanced quality control of the data through data validation routines, and automatic data import from telemetric stations which will partially erase the need for manual data entry and can even eradicate human error to some extent.
The NWRIMS can also aid in project management through setting up of key performance indicators, reviewing progress of the project and setting up alarms and notifications. This is linked to the data stored within the NWRIMS and can be viewed through any browser granting the users global access to important records. Importing data into the NWRIMS will create standardization of the nomenclature applied in the Water Resources Agency.
- National Water Resrouces Information Management System (NWRIMS) for Trinidad and Tobago white paper. Presented at the Caribbean Water and Wastewater Assocation Congress, October 3, 2012.