$850M drainage project for East Coast communities

Residents of the East Coast Demerara will benefit from a more than $850M project that will bring about improved drainage. Three new pump stations will be constructed, and a similar number of pumps will be installed.

The bids for the execution of the works which will be done at Buxton/Vigilance, Enmore/Hope and Lusignan are being evaluated, and contracts are expected to be awarded shortly.

The project, a component of the East Demerara Water Conservancy’s (EDWC) adaptation project, will be administered by the World Bank. The institution’s website states that the objective of the adaptation project is to “reduce the vulnerability of catastrophic flooding in the Guyana low-lying area that is currently threatened by sea level rise resulting from global climate change.

The project has been developed to guide a comprehensive upgrading of the EDWC and lowland drainage system, aimed at increasing discharge capacity and improving water level management.”

Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO), National Drainage and Irrigation Authority, (NDIA) Fredericks Flatts said the works are being executed under the Flood Risk Management Programme, funded by the Government of Guyana and the International Development Association (IDA), an agency of the World Bank.

CEO acting of the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority, Frederick Flatts

CEO acting of the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority, Frederick Flatts

The US$11.89M Flood Risk Management Programme is a four-component project and stemmed from pre-feasibility studies done under the Conservancy Adaptation project.

Speaking about the scope of the works and expected completion date for the $850M project Flatts said, “The pump stations will take about nine months and the earthworks in the EDWC are supposed to take about 30 months…”

The Flood Risk Management Project seeks to upgrade critical sections of the EDWC dams and canals; significantly improve the drainage capacity in priority areas along the East Coast; and increase the institutional capacity by implementation of dam-safety measures and practices, including the installation of instruments to monitor hydrometeorological data.

The project also caters for acquisition of heavy equipment to facilitate the upgrading and increased pumping capacity of the critical drainage areas, and will see more than 300,000 citizens in flood-prone regions of the East Coast Demerara benefiting tremendously from reduced flooding and climate risk.