Norwegian consulting firm Norconsult has announced it is part of a consortium awarded a contract for consultancy services as part of a project to identify a multipurpose water resources development project in the Gucha Migori River Basin in Kenya.

The Gucha-Migori river basin is part of the upper Nile system and falls within both the middle/ lower catchments of the Lake Victoria South Catchment Area. The river basin has potential for irrigation, multipurpose dams as well as economic use of floodwater and the increase of carbon sequestration.

The consortium will supply services including identification of a multipurpose water resources development project in the basin to: improve water and food security; reduce flow variability and flood damage; contribute towards improved livelihood; and address watershed degradation issues

It will undertake a diagnostic water resources assessment and sectoral thematic studies for multi-purpose water use (including both storage and conservation services viz. watershed management, flood and drought management, hydroelectric power, water supply and sanitation, irrigation, fish and wild life, navigation, wetlands management, recreation and water quality).

In addition, the Consortium will prepare a multipurpose investment strategy, framework basin management plan and also produce a report for a bankable multipurpose water resources development project. The study will last 12 months from May 2011.

The contract was awarded by iThe Nile Basin Initiative (NBI)/ Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Action Program with funds from the World Bank Nile Basin Trust Fund (NBTF).