Flood Risk Management is everybody’s business – Agriculture Minister

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DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Residents of the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) have been challenged by Minister of Agriculture, Noel Holder, to play their part in flood risk management.

“Flood risk management is built around the drainage and irrigation infrastructure and should be everybody’s business. Today, farmers and residents can be assured that the fear of flooding would now be minimal. I urge you to ensure that your drains and canals are kept free of weeds to realise the full benefit of this increased pumping capacity since flood management is a shared responsibility and you can make a difference,” Minister Holder said.

The charge was made on May 4 at the commissioning of a new drainage pump to service the Friendship – Vigilance area and surrounding communities on the East Coast of Demerara.

This is the second pump station to be commissioned on the East Coast of Demerara. It was realised at a cost of $240M and is equipped with a 70.6 cusec pump which has the capacity to discharge water at a rate of 31,700 gallons per minute. Approximately 200, 000 residents of the East Coast of Demerara stand to benefit from its operation.

Chairman of the Buxton-Foulis Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC), Forbes Abrams echoed the minister’s call. Abrams called on residents to desist from dumping solid waste into the waterways of their communities.

“We need to desist from making our canals the dumping ground for dead animals and whatever we need to discard from our homes, our yards and our factories. We also need to recognise that we too have a role to play in keeping these canals clean and clear of weeds and bushes so that there can be a free flow of water to the pumps and to the sea,” Abrams stressed.

According to Minister Holder, climate change is likely to cause extensive and chronic flooding; the inundation of valuable agricultural land; and loss of crops caused by the increased frequency of heavy rain which will have a negative impact on Guyana’s economy. Therefore, the government is working to improve flood management infrastructure across Guyana.

By: Kidackie Amsterdam