Kuwaitis involved in digging ‘sparkling wells’ to face law

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KUWAIT CITY, March 2: The issue of “sparkling wells” in farms has returned to light again after it was raised last week, as the government performance follow-up agency interacted with a citizen’s complaint and his warnings of its significant negative effects.

The Director of the Public Authority for Agricultural Affairs and Fish Resources (PAAAFR) Mishaal Al-Quraifa revealed a request to form a joint quadruple committee comprising of PAAAFR, the Ministry of Public Works, the Ministry of Electricity and Water, and the Environment Public Authority to develop a mechanism that confines those wells to Wafra farms, and warns them of immediate closure, reports Al-Rai daily.

In a press statement, Al-Qarifa explained that the Council of Ministers instructed the Ministry of Electricity and Water to form the required committee, with its chairmanship and membership of the concerned authorities, stressing that “Whoever refuses to implement this mechanism, a block will be placed on his transactions, and agricultural support will be suspended until his legal status is modified.” This comes in light of the interaction of the government performance follow-up agency with a complaint sent by the Head of the Sabah Al-Ahmad Residential City Committee Turki Al-Osaimi, in which he called on the agency to “urge the concerned authorities to stop this environmental and material crime in the national wealth and the loss of citizens in relation to the repercussions of the sparkling wells.”

The agency asked PAAAFR and EPA, each in its jurisdiction, to set up a mechanism to deal with the violating Wafra farms whose owners dug up sparkling wells, which caused an impact on the groundwater level and led to problems between neighbors as a result of the excess water that is disposed outside the farm. This salty water seeps into other farms, which leads to damage to those farms and drowning of their crops, in addition to the formation of lakes on the streets between the farms that spread diseases and bad smells, and damage roads.

The daily was the first to reveal these violations, after it published in the issue of February 15 a news report about PAAAFR noticing this phenomenon spreading among farms, as the owners of some of Wafra farms dig sparkling wells, some of which reach a depth of 80 meters. This act is considered a clear violation of the EPA law, and the latter was asked to play its role and achieve its objectives in preserving the environment.

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