Lighter loads on sugar punts slows factory operations
The El Nino situation is continuing to take a
heavy toll on the operations of the East
Demerara estates of the Guyana Sugar Corporation
Yesterday, a statement from the Corporation said that falling water levels in the canals are causing damage to cane punts forcing lighter loads and a backlog.
There have been instances where the Enmore factory had to shut down its grinding operations after running out of cane.
Photos taken by GuySuCo showed evidence of cracked earth in a dry cross canal.
Several canals used to transport punts of cane had fallen to critical levels not sufficient to take the punts. Water had to be pumped from the already low East Demerara Water Conservancy into the Enmore cultivation drainage and irrigation system.
According to GuySuCo, the challenge of pumping water is contributing heavily to the increased cost of production due to the effects of the dry spell. This does not include emergency repairs to punt fleet of the corporation.
The situation is so critical with the water situation that should pumps bringing water from conservancy cease to operate, possibly encountering a mechanical failure; then the factory will have to stop operations until a sufficient level of water is once again available.
Another challenge is the fact that servicing
the pumps can only be facilitated when the
factory stops grinding either for out of cane,
mechanical problem or routine maintenance.
There are also a number of other pumps of varying sizes being used across the estate for irrigation purposes.
To maintain this massive drainage and irrigation (D&I) effort on the estates, significant amount of unbudgeted resources of the Corporation has to be expended, GuySuCo said yesterday.
Also, the lack of water has significantly affected the planting programme which in turn would have domino effect on future crops.
While the dry conditions are ideal for tilling the land, planting cannot be executed, because of the lack of water to irrigate.
March 18, 2010