Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang on the 20th of June, 2014
We welcome the assurance by the Selangor state government that there will not be water rationing during the upcoming dry spell in the state that is caused by the El Nino weather phenomenon. We hope that the initiatives announced by the Selangor state government including the pumping of water from former mining ponds, cloud seeding in selected areas as well as the Hybrid Off-River Augmentation System (HORAS) will be effective in preventing the need for future water rationing.
At the same time, we urge the state government not to forget the water woes in places which are not supplied by the Selangor Dam including Balakong and Bangi. On the 17th of June, 2014, a serious disruption in water supply in the Hulu Langat area was announced by Syabas affecting up to 33, 446 households. This disruption was due to a drop in the water level for certain ponds including the Bangi Terminal Pond, the Tasik Kesuma Pond, the Bandar Teknologi Bond, the Bangi Golf Pond, the Semenyih Baru pond and the Kajang Utama Pond, all of which obtain their water supply from the Water Treatment Plant in Semenyih. The drop in the water level was caused by high demand that exceeded the capacity of the supply from the Semenyih water treatment plant.
The water disruptions in areas not supplied by the Selangor Dam comprise 40% of total households in the state. These disruptions will not be solved by the specific measures to pump water into Sungai Selangor. We urge the Selangor State government not to forget about serious water disruptions in these areas and put in place a comprehensive plan to address this problem including but not limited to:
(i) Set up a high-level water task force comprising of the MB, Excos, Selected ADUNs and state officials to find additional solutions to the water woes
(ii) Create a dedicated water disbursement team in areas prone to water disruption and provide it with sufficient resources
(iii) Implementing strict water conservation policies such as stopping the operations of all illegal car washes and providing incentives for water harvesting systems for new housing projects
(iv) Introduce an aggressive water conservation education program at the local level
(v) Work together with the Department of Environment (DOE) to strictly implement discharge standards for factories and sewerage treatment plants which discharge effluence into rivers such as Sungai Langat
A pro-active mind-set and approach will assure the residents of Selangor that the state government is doing all within its power to minimize water disruptions and prevent the need for another water rationing exercise.