The Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Babatunde Samuel Adejare disclosed this during the sensitization program for the 2017 Water Technology and Environmental Control Exhibition and Conference (WATEC) held at Renaissance Hotel, on Monday.
Adejare said that a retention pond was currently being built at Sangotedo area of Lagos State as a form of rainfall harvesting to serve as a reservoir for stormwater at the peak of the rainy season, for onward release into the Okota River after the rains subsided.
The Commissioner, who was one of the respondents at the interview session of the sensitization program, explained that the retention pond was essential as Lagos in recent times had been experiencing flash flooding due to the rise in sea level and persistent rainfall.
He further expatiated that flooding all over the world was rated as the second biggest of all natural disasters, stating that the present administration has resolved to find lasting solutions to the issue of flooding. The Commissioner informed that Lagos had experienced 475mm of rainfall in the last seven days, adding that the rains of 8th of July which was 178mm were more than 6 months of rainfall in the city of California, USA.
He averred that as part of the efforts to contain flooding, the government had resolved to be more stringent in the campaign against dumping of refuse in canals and drains and is ready to scale up the application of physical planning laws against the erection of building on canals, drainage channels, and water courses.
The Commissioner had attributed the flooding of some areas in the State to the high tide of the lagoon, persistent rainfall and high volume of storm water, as well as backflow from the lagoon to the drains instead of the drains, discharge into the lagoon. He emphasized that upon the cessation of the rain, the water would have receded as this was a clear indication that we were experiencing flash-flood.
Adejare stated that the retention pond was part of the State government’s response to the issue of flooding, in addition to the existence of about 202 primary channels that also serve as storage for storm water, while also serving to drain storm water. The Commissioner thereafter cautioned against dumping refuse in the drainages as such unhealthy acts block water channels and contribute to flooding with unpleasant consequences.