Better management of water in the Artibonite

The watershed of Artibonite is the largest water basin in Haiti and the Artibonite River is the primary source of hydroelectric power and water for irrigation. Upstream of the dam Péligre, agriculture, livestock and coal production are the main sources of income for about 15,000 rural households. Over 70,000 rural families dependent on 30,000 ha of irrigated area for grow rice that produces 80% of national production. Despite its importance, deforestation and unsustainable agricultural practices have led to severe erosion, estimated each year on average to 1,305 metric ton per km2 in the watershed.

To this, are added the need for irrigation and flood control in the lower basin insufficiently taken into account in the decisions of the management of water. What explains the implementation of the water management program in the watershed of the Artibonite (PROGEBA), funded by the Inter American Development Bank (IDB) following the grant agreement dated 5 February and implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Rural Development (MARNDR).

The PROGEBA aims to reduce the loss of crops, livestock and infrastructure from flooding and increase agricultural productivity in the Artibonite basin.

This water management program includes two major components : the water management infrastructure and of sediment and the institutional strengthening of the actors.

To this end, the Ministry signed a first batch of three contracts with the firms TECINA, SOCAEE and BETA, elected on the basis of tender responding to procurement standards in Haiti and the principles governed by the donor.

The firm TECINA will have to work on the protection of shoreline on 220 meters linear downstream of the dam Canneau with the aim of securing this work responsible for the irrigation of 32,000 ha.

As for the SOCAEE firm it will work on the rehabilitation of a lot of the hydraulic trame of the pilot area irrigated by Lower Benoit, Bidonne and Laville (3,300ha).

Regarding the firm BETA, it will oversee the bank protection works and supervision of the lot of the hydraulic trame currently in tendering procedure.

The total amount of these three contracts is estimated at just over 208 million gourdes.

The rest of the acquisition process for works, goods and services will continue in accordance with the planning of the procurement plan.

According to officials, at the end of the Program, the whole work will allow :

  • L’amélioration de la rétention de l’eau et des sédiments dans les ravines sélectionnées de la partie supérieure du bassin versant de l’Artibonite ;
  • The improvement of distribution of water in irrigated area of Artibonite ;
  • The reduction of waterlogging in the irrigated area of Artibonite;
  • A better management of floods in the dam Péligre ;
  • The improvement of internal management of the Organization of Development of the Artibonite Valley (ODVA) ;
  • The Improvement of the operation and maintenance of infrastructure and hydraulic equipment in the irrigated area of Artibonite.