Find Water and Sanitation expertise in Solomon Islands

Water resources are varied throughout Solomon Islands, with about 62% of people in receipt of a piped water supply (1999/2004). The Solomon Islands Water Authority (SIWA), established by the Solomon Water Authority Act of 1993, provides management and development of water resources and sewerage services in Honiara and main urban areas while provincial governments are free to choose SIWA or to operate their own supply. The majority of rural areas are served by the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation project (RWSS) of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Environmental Health Division.

There is no form of water treatment in rural areas and the main source of water on many of the smaller islands is captured rainwater. The government has approved expansion of the National Water and Sanitation Project (2004) and have received loans from regional development banks in an effort to improve water quality, sanitation, infrastructure and access throughout the islands.

By 2015, as a result of the Millennium Development Goal 7 (MDG 7), Solomon Islands hopes to halvethe number of people who do not have sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation. UNICEF works closely with the water supplies and sanitation issues of Solomon Islands and reports that: ‘Over half of people living in Honiara’s poorest communities defecate in the open and cannot access or do not use latrines or toilets. In rural areas the situation is even worse with 4 out of 5 people not having access to a safe toilet or latrine. In addition it is estimated that 70 percent of all schools in Solomon Islands do not offer students safe water supply, toilets or hand washing facilities.’

Current and upcoming policies are expected to support communities as they build their own household toilets and latrines to work towards effective sanitation in the poorest areas of the country. If this project is successful then there will be a reduction of diarrhoea (MDG 6), improved maternal health (MDG 5) and reduced child mortality (MDG 4).

Water and Sanitation organisations in Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands Water Authority