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Sea, river defence being shored – up

Georgetown : Recognising the importance of a strong sea defence structure, the coalition government will be making adequate investments for the protection of the country’s coastal zone infrastructure and systems.

Geoffrey Vaughn, Coordinator of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure’s, Works Services Group, at a recent press conference indicated that the sea and river defence sector is currently benefitting from two major donor programmes. Implementation commenced during 2015 and will continue during 2016.

He added that the first programme is the Government of Guyana/Caribbean Development Bank Sea and River Defence Resilience Project  which sees US$25M being loaned from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). The administration will invest US$5.9M for capacity building within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, for community awareness and education programme, engineering services, monitoring and evaluation, project management and flood protection infrastructure.

This project has a total of 5.4 kilometres of sea and river defence reconstruction works to be delivered to the following eight critical areas as part of flood protection infrastructure; Johanna Cecelia/Zorg, Essequibo Coast, Region 2 (1,000m); Success, Leguan Island, Region 3 (500m); Endeavour/Blenheim, Leguan Island, Region 3 (430m); Grove/Look Out, East Bank Essequibo, Region 3 (530m); Crane/Harlem/Rotterdam/Mary, West Coast Demerara, Region 3 (1,000m); Good Success/New Hope, East Bank Demerara, Region 4 (500m); Londsdale/Sister’s Village, East Bank Berbice, Region 6 (700m); and No. 78 Village to Line Path, Corentyne, Region 6 (700m).

 The project also focuses on capacity building involving shoreline monitoring change and analysis.

The second programme refers to the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) Budget Support Programme which will see critical works continuing during 2016.

The 2015 budget presentation saw the coalition government committing to the development of integrated coastal zone policies and strategies which will ensure a cohesive approach to delivering sustainable sea and river defence management. A commitment was also given for the restoration of mangroves.