In an effort to improve the country’s drainage capacity in the long term, the government is working to develop a system that can withstand the impacts of climate change, which has resulted in an increase in rainfall in a short period of time. This revelation was recently made by the Agriculture Minister, Zulfikar Mustapha.

“As it is now, there are a number of areas that are under water because of the system we currently have. Some areas that do not have gravity flow, we have to use pumps and the pumps take a little longer than the sluice to pull the water. I am working to put a system in place where we can have both pumps and sluices operational. When the tides are low, we’ll use the sluice and when the tide is high, we’ll use the pumps so that we can have a 24-hour system of draining the land,” he said.

He added that it is common knowledge that Guyana’s coast is below sea level, and that its drainage system is only capable of draining 1 ½ to 2 inches of water in a 24-hour period.

“So, when we record five and six and ten inches of accumulated water because of heavy rains, imagine how long it would take to drain those systems. This is why it is imperative for us to have our drainage system work on a 24-hour basis,” Minister Mustapha said.

The subject Minister also said this year, that the Ministry plans to install a number of additional high capacity pumps to its fleet of drainage pumps.

“We’re working to develop an overall structure that will improve our current drainage system. This year, we plan to install a number of new pumps across the country since we cannot rely solely on gravity drainage. With climate change having such a great impact on the weather patterns, we have to prepare our system and have it functioning at its fullest capacity in the long term, especially since rainfall has become a lot more unpredictable,” Minister Mustapha said.


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