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Narrower holes, wider benefits

Published on: 24/12/2013

A MUStRAIN case study on manual well-drilling.

The case study 'Manual well-drilling: an alternative for shallow groundwater development for multiple use services (MUS)' looks into the features of manual well-drilling in Ethiopia including the costs and benefits. Manual drilling is a fast and relatively low-cost method of accessing shallow groundwater, potentially for multiple uses.

There is a large variation in cost depending on the enterprise or organisations involved, and diameter of the hole. Manual drilling is normally cheaper than hand-digging wells. Reasons are due to teh shorter time taken and the lower cost of lining.

Initially, promotion and distribution of manually drilled wells was set up for irrigation, but in practice people use these wells for various purposes as they are convenient. The smaller diameter well and its covering slab prevent inflow from dirty surface water.

The case study is part of the MUStRAIN case study series, in which the uptake of Multiple Use Services (MUS) in different contexts within Ethiopia is being documented. The case studies analyse cost-benefit relations as well as opportunities and challenges for implementation of MUS.

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