The Electric Power Corporation is working on a plan to minimise the vulnerability of the Vaimauga District, from Alaoa all the way down to the coastal area, to flooding.
This the goal of the Alaoa Flood Control Multi-Purpose Dam project.
In its Inception Report tabled before the Cabinet Development Committee (C.D.C.) E.P.C. highlights the three main objectives of the ambitious plan which are;
• FLOOD PROTECTION;
To protect, reduce and mitigate damages of severe floods from the Vaisigano River on Government assets, infrastructure, and facilities, utilities, businesses, villages, personal properties, belongings and fatalities
• SEASONAL WATER SUPPLY; To contain and store water during severe floods to allocate part which will be stored to maintain supply all year found from wet to dry seasons. The Alaoa Water Treatment Plant is the Samoa Water Authority’s largest plant which supplies about 60% of Apia Water supply. And the dam storage will solve water shortages during the dry spells.
• ADDITIONAL HYDROPOWER GENERATION; To enable construction of a 1MW hydro plant to take advantage of stored water that would normally flow to the ocean to generate electricity. Stored water in the Dam will also increase electricity production to existing hydro dams.
After horrific experiences from the 2012 Cyclone Evan and the recent Cyclone Gita which left behind damages valued at between $200 to $300 million tala, the proposed Alaoa Multi-Purpose Flood Control Dam and Hydro Plant is the “anti-dote which will alleviate future floods from Cyclones,” says General Manager Tologata Tile Tuimalealiifano.
“There is no doubt that floods from Vaisigano River will continue for years to come. And the proposed project will alleviate any future threats during Cyclones,” he added.
Already E.P.C. has the Asian Development Bank’s support to start engagement with the Entura Hydro Tasmania firm to conduct a full feasibility study, site selection of the dam, geotechnical investigation, environmental impact assessment, conceptual design, cost estimate as well as financial analysis of the proposal.