NIA fast-tracks P29B irrigation projects

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    The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) will fast-track the implementation of its big-ticket irrigation projects valued at P28.95 billion.

    Among the projects that are targeted to be completed soon are the P11.212 -billion Jalaur River Multipurpose Project Stage II in Calinog, Iloilo that broke ground in February 2019; the P4.37 -billion Chico River Pump Irrigation Project in Pinukpuk, Kalinga that started in August 2018; and the P13.37-billion Tarlac Balog-Balog Multipurpose Project Phase II in San Jose, Tarlac which was first developed on July 2017.

    NIA said as of end-2020, the Jalaur project was 41.90 percent complete against a target of 29.55 percent. The project includes the construction of three dams composed of a 109-meter high dam, a 38-meter afterbay dam and a catch dam in Alibunan River as well as an 80-kilometer high line canal.

    The project is expected to lead to an increase in rice production of 3.6 to 5 metric tons (MT) per hectare in Iloilo. It also includes a 6.6 megawatts (MW) hydroelectric power plant.

    As of last yea, the Chico river project recorded an actual physical accomplishment of 55.49 percent against the target of 58.99 percent while the Tarlac project reported an actual physical accomplishment of 37.60 percent against the target of 74.97 percent.

    NIA said changes in the accomplishment are due to the ongoing re

    The Chico river irrigation is seen to cause additional 36,217 MT of milled rice while the Tarlac project is likely to generate at least 43.5 MW of electricity when completed.