The National Drainage and Irrigation agencies are placing special emphasis on the works, which are critical to be implemented, in order to have a maximum functioning system for the upcoming May/June rainy season.
As the rainy season nears, works are moving a pace to maximise opportunity days to complete the works requested by residents and farmers in flood prone areas.
Technical Officers from the Mahaica/Mahaicony/Abary – Agricultural Development Authority Scheme and the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority on Tuesday visited the Mahaica and Mahaicony areas to inspect ongoing construction of structures, excavation works and projects.
These works are part of a strategic plan to improve the drainage and irrigation capacity of the entire farming area in the MMA scheme.
They include the construction of a parallel canal, embankment and a three-door discharge sluice along the Mahaicony River from Hyde Park to Retrieve, Mahaicony to drain some 12,000 acres of farmlands.
Raising the right bank of the Mahaicony River, lifting the embankment of the right and left banks of the Mahaica River and construction of a flood embankment along Industry and Manuel Canals in the Mahaica River are also part of the programme.
Some of these works commenced immediately after the December/January rains and will be concluded in time for the rainy season.
These works are part of the drainage and irrigation work planned for the area.
Drainage culverts were installed along the Mahaicony Branch Road and an excavator will be deployed to repair flood embankments along the Mahaicony River.
In addition, an excavator has been deployed in the Abary River to assist farmers to emploder farmlands in anticipation of the upcoming season. The NDIA is expected to deploy its dredging equipment to clear the Abary outfall next week.
NDIA are responsible for the primary drainage systems in agriculture communities.
In the 2009 budget, some $11B was set aside for the upgrading of D&I infrastructure, which will work alongside a number of projects, which have been co-financed by international institutions.
These investments, according to Minister of Agriculture, Robert Persaud, during the parliamentary debates, are expected to improve the efficiency of the drainage infrastructure, reduce the prevalence of flooding and will lead to an increase in agricultural production and productivity.
In the MMA region, the Minister had said some $163.7M will go towards civil works and fostering agricultural development.
The US$3.8M World Bank Conservancy Adaptation Project, he had said, will finance the development of the technical foundation for a master plan of future interventions within the EDWC. This will also be in lowland drainage systems, as well as specific upgrading works and operational improvements aimed at enhancing the flood control capacity of the EDWC.
These works are expected to improve the ability to manage water levels behind the EDWC dam during heavy rains by improving internal water flows in the EDWC and increasing EDWC drainage relief capacity to the Demerara River and eventually the Atlantic Ocean.
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