I write to reinforce my suggestion to the consciousness of the ‘visionary authorities’ that at this stage the most alternative solution to flood control in Guyana is the implementation of centrifugal screw pumps.
The screw pump is a better option for flood control in Guyana because it has the capacity of lift water at alarming magnitudes in a timely and effective manner.
The Ministry of Agriculture (hydraulic department) and the NDIB should be embarrassed for the ill futuristic approach taken to satisfy the national development strategy in flood management for the residential coastlands and capital Georgetown.
The Minister of Agriculture often laments that dumping of garbage is a contributory factor to the flooding in the city and its environs.
This is true when culverts and drainage station litter traps become blocked preventing the steady flow of water. Many housing developments over the years have emerged but are not provided with waste disposal services save for private collection services.
In this instance some citizens are reluctant to accept and therefore practice the custom of burning and indiscriminately dump garbage directly into the canals or onto parapets that eventually makes way into the drainage canals.
Needless to say the law is seldom enforced to deal with this calamity and if or whenever enforced many large scale scallywags go unnoticed before the authorities. I would like to point out to the relevant authorities that although the garbage restricts water flow to the drainage pumps, it is not the real factual issue. What is the real issue here is the inefficiency of the 36 inch pumps in discharging floodwater in a timely manner into the sea.
The flooding situation has peaked dependence on gravity flow and as residential development intensifies, deepening of open canals are required.
It has become quite noticeable that many open canals have either been filed in to accommodate sewerage pipelines or has not been properly maintained via dredging (at dry season).
Guyana coastlands are vulnerable when it comes to water either from the front or the back. There are no guarantee that the current sea walls or earthen conservancy dam would remain intact.
Therefore the coastlands as we know it would disappear with the introduction of billions of gallons of water if a real breach shall occur. The almost two century’s old conservancy mud dam prevents the populated coastland from becoming inundated and this is a very real serious threat and concern.
If by chance the dam should break like it allegedly did in 2005 then chaos would return and the boasted upon 36 inch pumps would obviously prove futile as they already are in tackling a few inches of rainfall.
These 36 inch mobile hydraulic pumps supposedly discharge 560-gallons of water per second, which is far from reaching the desired objective.
Whenever it rains citizens continue to flood whether in Mahaicony riverain area, the East Coast of Demerara or the capital city of Georgetown. This must be a real embarrassment to the ‘visionary authorities’.
In order to effectively manage the flooding condition of Guyana the proper efficient pumps must be realised and deployed to alleviate the magnitude of water whether from rainfall, breach of seawall or conservancy dam.
Therefore once again I suggest that the wood screw pump should be enquired into and acquired to better manage flooding in Guyana.
This pump was designed in 1913 by A.B. Wood to manage drainage problems in New Orleans, USA.
The pumps have screws inside them somewhat like a ship’s propeller and vary in sizes with the largest totalling 14 feet or 168 inches in diameter.
The wood screw pump was described by Professor W.H. Creighton, Dean of Department of Technology, Tulane University 1915 “the pump is larger than any centrifugal pump ever built and among the largest screw pumps, 12 feet in diameter, of horizontal type, designed to give 247, 500 gallons per minute.”
The screw pumps are driven by 2,000 horsepower electric motors, and is probably the most economical and fastest running centrifugal pumps in the world.
The pump raises large volumes of water that obtain a capacity of 550 cubic feet per second, while utilising moderate energy.
These pumps are probably the largest and most efficient low lift pumps in the world and were designed to lift a large volume of water over New Orleans 10m high levees up to before reconstruction of the levees began after hurricane Katrina struck.
New Orleans during the early 20th century had experienced chronic flooding problems for many years that negative citizens’ health.
It was not until the installation of the screw pumps that the city was able to master the flood concerns and as well as which made the pumps gain worldwide recognition of its extreme efficiency and effectiveness.
The screw pump have proved operationally efficient in New Orleans and were however ordered and installed in many other territories such as China, Egypt, India and the Netherlands.
For a century these very pumps have drained New Orleans. It was these said pumps that pumped dry the 20feet of murky flood waters brought on by hurricane Katrina.
Additionally for common knowledge New Orleans has recently embarked on a state of the art 5,000 horsepower diesel engine which spins four propeller blades 150 times per minute.
This altogether pushes 150,000 gallons of water per second by 13 pumps that is estimated equivalent to about 15 Olympic sized swimming pools.
This state of the art pump is the biggest pump in the world and should be completed by 2011. I do hope in the interest of concerned citizens that in the future meaningful advice and economical investments are given and made in the acquisition of few screw pumps for Guyana in care of the national development strategy.
I am reasonably certain that the head of state can solicit funding in the acquisition of few 12 or 14 inch screw pumps, when out on international financial aid missions.
If ever Guyana should benefit from LCDS funding then this would be the best time to capitalise on a much needed and required flood control mechanisms for the country and people.
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