Water Industry News

Black & Veatch creating solutions for earthquake and tsunami emergency support project

Jakarta, Indonesia (September 8, 2005) – Black & Veatch announced today that it has started work under a contract with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the Irrigation Component of the Earthquake and Tsunami Emergency Support Project in Indonesia. Through the three-year contract, the Government of Indonesia employ Black & Veatch to enhance, strengthen and upgrade in-country capabilities. 

Restoration and rehabilitation work by Black & Veatch began in late August across the Aceh province and in Nias Island North Sumatra province. The company is working with Provincial Irrigation Projects and Provincial and District Water Resources Services staff on the implementation of all components of the project. Transfer of knowledge and skills to government agency personnel will occur through both formal training and on-the-job experience.

We were all shocked by the tsunami and the earthquakes, but it was particularly devastating to those Black & Veatch staff with personal links to Aceh," said Nick Townsend, B&V Water Asia regional director of client services. "We were invited by the Indonesian Government to assist with relief efforts and damage assessments within a few days of the destruction, and we rapidly mobilized diverse resources to do so. 

Our team has now returned to North Sumatra for the rehabilitation and restoration work.” Townsend said Black & Veatch brings to the project proven management as well as technical skills and experience in addressing uncertainty. 

The company will assist in restoring the irrigation facilities to 24,300 hectares (60,021 acres) along the northeast and southwest coasts in Aceh and in rehabilitating 7,000 hectares (17,290 acres) in the heavily damaged areas on the west coast of Aceh province. In addition, the project will focus on 2,300 hectares (5,750 acres) in the heavily damaged areas in the Nias Island, North Sumatra province.

Black & Veatch previously provided support for the initial damage assessment surveys carried out by the government. As part of the Marine and Coastal Resources Management Project in Indonesia, a component of which the company was managing at the time of the disaster, Black & Veatch also developed a comprehensive geo-database. As a result, the company will soon commence a nearshore marine survey in Aceh and establish a draft coastal zonation plan.

“Black & Veatch has broad experience in the provinces of Aceh and North Sumatra going back two decades” said Black & Veatch Indonesia Water Representative Sri Harianti. “That experience and our previously established links, together with our managerial skills and resources, enable us to contribute significant value to the relief program. Successful implementation of this project will have a positive impact on the families and communities so tragically affected and support the values of our company.”

Indonesia was hardest hit among the countries affected by the earthquake and tsunami on December 26, 2004 . With some 126,000 killed, close to 100,000 missing, and over 400,000 displaced, one in five of the population of Aceh became homeless  The disaster resulted in complete destruction of most infrastructure services and livelihoods along a 200-km (124-mile) stretch of coastline between the provincial capital Banda Aceh and main west coast capital of Meulabou. 

The earthquake that followed on March 28, 2005, in the Nias Island, North Sumatra province caused additional damages to infrastructure, further impacting the livelihoods of the provinces.

Black & Veatch Black & Veatch Corporation is a global engineering, consulting and construction company specializing in infrastructure development in energy, water, information and government markets.