$72.3B to advance D&I network this year

A whopping $72.3 billion has been set aside for the maintenance and advancement of drainage and irrigation (D&I) expansion this year, as the government continues to construct climate-resilient infrastructure countrywide.

The administration plans to replicate the Hope Canal in other regions due to the tremendous success of the drainage system, as it relates to flood relief and water management.

The East Demerara Water Conservancy, better known locally as the Hope Canal, is one of Guyana’s largest drainage projects, which provides significant support to agricultural and residential areas.

An aerial view of the Hope Canal

The overall intention of the Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali–led Administration is to mitigate issues resulting from climate vulnerabilities and preserve Guyana’s coastland from losses caused by recurrent flooding.

Senior Minister in the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance and Public Service, Dr Ashni Singh on Monday explained that the designs for three of the new Hope-like canal structures commenced in 2023.

While presenting the 2024 budget in the National Assembly, Dr Singh highlighted that works will begin on two of these structures in Regions Five and Six to bring lasting relief to the residents and farmers this year.

Additionally, a total of 40 mobile pumps will be purchased at a sum of $29.4 billion to supplement other interventions being implemented to maintain drainage and irrigation networks.

This year, works will continue on several other pump stations which includeA-Line sluice, Belle Vue, Canal No 1, Charity, Cottage, Cozier, Jimbo Grove, Letter Kenny, and Meten-Meer-Zorg.

Investments will be made in pump stations at Chesney, Farm, Grove South, and Little Diamond.

Meanwhile, canals will be rehabilitated at Big Baiboo, Brickery, Bushy Park, Coverden, East Bank Berbice, Mahaicony Creek, New Providence, Onverwagt, Perth, Plaisance, Wash Clothes and West Watooka.

Works in critical areas were completed in 2023, which include the rehabilitation and maintenance of canals such as Bonasika, Coverden, Mocha, and Providence.