Ministry says Selangor aware water crisis inevitable
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 3 — The Selangor government is aware of and has acknowledged that a water crisis will occur in the state, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya in 2014 despite having stressed that the supply of treated water is sufficient until 2019, according to the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry.
In a statement here, the ministry said that this was proven when the state government agreed to implement five of the eight mitigation projects costing RM301 million as proposed by the federal government.
“The Selangor government’s nod for the implementation of the projects shows that it acknowledges that a water crisis will occur in 2014 if no actions are taken to address it.
“This also shows that the Selangor government’s view that there is sufficient treated water supply until 2019 is merely a view which is not supported by facts,” the statement said.
The ministry said the federal government had already agreed to approve an allocation of RM606 million to implement the eight mitigation projects to avert a water crisis in the three areas after no action was taken by the Selangor government to ensure a sufficient supply of treated water from the water treatment plants in the state.
The statement issued by the ministry was also aimed at correcting certain remarks made by Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim and state executive councillors on the water issue in Selangor.
“This correction is made because the remarks were inaccurate and have caused public confusion,” according to the ministry.
According to the National Water Services Commission (SPAN), the overall water supply in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya was still under control, but several areas were reported to have regular water disruptions.
“This is because the average water reserve rate currently stands at 2.5 per cent compared with the optimum level of 10 per cent.
“However, SPAN has been asked to identify the areas which face regular water disruptions and prepare contingency plans for these areas in case of water rationing, through discussions with Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor and the state government,” the ministry said.
According to the ministry, the construction of the Langat 2 water treatment plant was proposed to meet the demand for water in 2014 based on a study made in 2000.
The findings of the study proved to be true when SPAN also projected that the total water supply in the existing water supply system was not sufficient to meet demand in 2014.
“In fact, SPAN has also projected that the water supply from 34 water treatment plants in Selangor will only meet the demand for water until end of this year,” the ministry said in the statement.
Hence, the ministry said the Langat 2 water treatment plant must be built now to ensure that the consumers would not face water woes in the near future.
On Khalid’s claim that Syabas’ capacity of water distribution only stood at 4,371 million litres per day (MLD) compared to the capacity of water production in the 34 plants which stood at 4,807 MLD, the ministry said all of the water treatment plants were designed to produce treated water of 4,581 MLD.
“However, there are some constraints in the production system in several plants and the system only allows the distribution of 4,371 MLD of treated water.”
The ministry said the completion of the first and second phases of the mitigation projects, however, would be able to optimise water production to 4,581 MLD.
“In planning for efficient water supply system, the capacity to be considered is the capacity of water distribution, which is 4,371 MLD, because that is the amount of water that reaches consumers.
“If the design capacity of 4,581 MLD or production capacity of 4,807 MLD is applied, it will not reflect the actual amount of water available for distribution, and thus give the wrong impression about the current water reserves in the state,” the ministry said.
The use of a wrong fact in making plans for an efficient water supply system will cause consumers in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya to face the risk of a future water crisis, it added. — Bernama