NEW DELHI: The Government of India and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), on Friday, inked a $200 million loan deal to bolster flood and riverbank erosion risk management along the 650 kilometres (km) long main stem of the mighty Brahmaputra river in Assam.
Ms. Juhi Mukherjee, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Finance, for the Government of India, and Mr. Hoe Yun Jeong, Deputy Country Director of ADB’s India Resident Mission, for ADB signed the loan agreement for the Climate Resilient Brahmaputra Integrated Flood and Riverbank Erosion Risk Management Project in Assam.
The project builds on the success and lessons from the ADB-funded Assam Integrated Flood and Riverbank Erosion Risk Management Investment Programme executed during 2010–2020, and similar investments in Bangladesh.
It will persist to combat recurrent flooding and prevailing riverbank erosion of the Brahmaputra river.
After inking the deal, Juhi Mukherjee emphasized that the project interventions will be a contributing factor to broader stabilisation of the Brahmaputra river in areas susceptible to high flooding and erosion and will also make the state's disaster resilience robust.
While speaking on the matter, Hoe Yun Jeong said that ADB continues to pursue its cost-effective, adaptive, and systematic river stabilisation approach to manage the Brahmaputra river through this transformative project.
The ADB will also persist to strengthen the capacity of state agencies and affected communities to manage the flood and riverbank erosion risks in an efficient manner while deploying riverbank protection technology.
Under the project interventions, 60 km of riverbanks will be stabilized, 32 km of pro-siltation measures will be installed and 4 km of climate-resilient flood embankments will be constructed in five high priority districts of Dibrugarh, Goalpara, Kamrup Rural, Morigaon, and Tinsukia.
These will ultimately lead to securing living spaces, supporting livelihoods, creating employment opportunities and also improving the river's navigability.
It will also provide a huge boost to the institutional capacity in flood forecasting and warning systems, modern surveys, erosion and embankment breach modeling, asset management, flood risk mapping, land use planning, and pilot nature-based solutions and the graduation approach.
The project will be beneficial for about 1 million people and will also expand crop area by about 50,000 hectares by maximizing co-benefits and empowering women through disaster-resilient economic activities.