Enough water for the Games

Although water consumption in Athens is expected to rise up to 50 percent during the 2004 Olympics, the capital’s reservoirs are more than amply stocked and will be able to handle extra demand, a water company official said yesterday. According to Yiannis Passios, head of the Athens Water Company (EYDAP) network operation department, reserves currently stand at an all-time record of 1.032 billion cubic meters of water, more than nine times above the critically low levels which prompted a water-saving program in the summer of 1993. Matters are expected to improve further after the winter rains. Passios told Kathimerini that average daily consumption in July and August is 1.2 million cubic meters. During the Games, he said, this could peak at 1.8 million – close to the 2.1 million top daily capacity of EYDAP’s four water purification plants. During the Games, EYDAP inspectors will step up safety checks, while special electronic water quality monitors capable of detecting possible terrorist attempts to poison reserves will be installed at all Olympic facilities.