Nepal | July 10, 2020

Govt to reduce, prevent further disaster during monsoon

Himalayan News Service
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KATHMANDU: The Department of Soil Conservation and Watershed Management has prepared an action plan to outline preparedness measures and ways to solve problems of landslides and unstable slopes induced by the April 25 earthquake and its subsequent aftershocks.

As many as 14 out of 30 districts rattled by earthquakes have been declared disaster areas given the severity of loss of lives and damaged to private and government property.

“The occurrence of mudslides, soil erosion and land rupture in watershed areas, damage to water sources, leakage in irrigation canals and formation of artificial dams by blockage of water flow in some of the streams following the devastating quakes have made people vulnerable in the affected districts,” an excerpt of the action plan reads.

The shift of and damage to water sources in some places have deprived the people of safe drinking water. “Therefore, the DoSCWM has developed an action plan to address the woes of quake survivors, prevent further damage to lands during monsoon and preserve and improve water sources,” the action plan said.

Under the part of ‘Landslide Management Strategy’ of the action plan, DoSCWM, in collaboration with the Department of Water Induced Disaster Prevention, will collect factual information on landslide. They have already issued a circular to their district offices to proceed with the task.

It has also sought necessary programme and budget from the government for quake-affected districts on the basis of preliminary assessment and estimations while forming a technical team comprising experts from DoSCWM and DoWIDP to carry out the task of landslide control and management. The technical team will provide necessary technical suggestions regarding landslide management and map earthquake risks by coordinating with ICIMOD and other organisations.

Experts and officials will pay a field visit to assess the present situation.

DoWIDP has been tasked with managing landslides on national highways and in large settlements while DoSCWM will manage and control landslides in watershed areas. According to the action plan, the government will also engage locals in controlling, managing and preventing landslides to create employment opportunities and pay daily wages to them for their labour.

Similarly, officials will classify quake-affected areas into less vulnerable, moderately vulnerable, vulnerable and highly vulnerable categories depending on the risks facing the settlements, highways and development infrastructure and act according to the disaster risk reduction plan.


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