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WASH Cluster Incident Report №190, 15/05/2019

Dear All,

 

This is to report on one incident of shelling very close to a pumping station on the Line of Contact, and to give an update regarding water supply in Sloviansk and Lysychansk

 

Incident Report 190

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Sadly the 1st Lift Pumping Station of the South Donbas Water Way (PS) was shelled on Tuesday 14th May, from 11.30 am to 11.45 am. See attached Incident report No. 190.

 

Electricity and Water (including Sloviansk city cuts)

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Following recent problems experienced by Voda Donbasa and Lysychansk Vodakanals, yesterday Tuesday 14th May, some pumps from Sloviansk Vodakanal were cut from electricity, according to the chief engineer. This is the second time Sloviansk Vodokanal was targeted: at the start of May DTEK cut the administrative building and water quality lab, but now more significant cuts were made affecting water pumps. In practice, water pressures are now reduced in certain areas of the city, affecting 20,000 people. Especially people living above around the 5th floor of multi-storey buildings are reportedly affected. Worryingly the central hospital might also be experiencing a shortage of water.

 

Monthly payments for electricity for Sloviansk Vodokanal are between 1.2-1.5 million UAH, however the current debt for electricity is around 3.6 m UAH. Prior to energy market reforms it should be noted that Sloviansk Vodokanal was a “bad payer” and never fully paid for electricity, instead waiting for the end of each year, when central government covered shortfalls for vodakanals. In 2019 the vodokanal has to pay on regular basis, although a low level of tariff collection may also be affecting SVK’s ability to pay, caused by poor local economy, in turn affected by the conflict crisis in the east of Ukraine.

 

The WASH Cluster has made clear that humanitarian support will be unlikely for SVK due to the legal and economic nature of the dispute, which is not wholly related to the conflict. However, we will review the situation. An emergency committee at local level was not yet called.

 

In looking for solutions to this problem, which has affected not only Voda Donbasa, but also Lysychansk city and now Sloviansk, the European Union has very helpfully lobbied the government of Ukraine. Perhaps in response there are two bills making their way through parliament: 10227 and 10227-1. As I understand it, both detail changes to the energy market law in order to ensure stable power supply to facilities like coal mines and water (and wastewater) utilities.

10227 (authored by Oleg Nedava, a member of parliament in Donetsk oblast) suggests to make next changes to the current legislation that coal mines and water facilities in Donetsk and Luhansk oblast should be excluded from the lists of power consumers, that can be cut off from power supply.
10227-1 (authors: Olena Babak and, Andrievskyi, head of budget committee) is more comprehensive and suggests actions that would apply for a limited period, while the JFO is operating. It also mentions that the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, responsible Ministries and the National Tariff Commission should make relevant changes to the different resolutions during two-months after the bill is adopted:

Identify the power supplier-company with special responsibilities for supplying power to coal mine companies (owned by state) and water and waste water utilities in Luhansk and Donetsk  oblasts.
Define how the power supply company can be compensated for losses due supplying areas affected by the conflict
Create a list of affected water (and waste water) companies; clarifying funding streams and their financial situation, including losses of those companies due to operating in the conflict area.
Due to the special temporary measures for power supply provision, implement a special tariff calculations and reporting functions

 

Please feel free to contact WASH Cluster team for clarifications.

Webspace(s): 
Organization(s): 
United Nations Children's Fund
Cluster(s)/Sector(s): 
Original Publication Date: 
15 May 2019
Document type: 
Situation Report