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Environment and health

In 2003, about 65 percent of the groundwater samples showed signs of microbiological contamination. Freshwater reserves are also affected by other types and sources of contamination. The nature of the geology and a deficient sewage collection and treatment system are contributing to groundwater contamination.

Over-abstraction of groundwater is already occurring on New Providence, where the greatest water demands of the country exist, causing saltwater intrusion. The aquifers are very shallow and are at great risk of becoming inundated with saline water even with a small rise in sea level due to climate change. Decreasing precipitation in some islands is also reducing freshwater availability. Natural disasters and severe weather, such as hurricanes, are probably the most threatening to the health of the freshwater reserves (USACE, 2004).


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