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Saturday August 24, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Saturday August 24, 2013 MYT 8:01:11 AM
by ian mcintyre
GEORGE TOWN: Consumers in Penang will have to pay double the water conservation surcharge for every 1,000 litres if they use more than 35,000 litres each month.
Penang Water Supply Corporation Sdn Bhd (PBAPP) has raised the surcharge, which is imposed to promote prudent usage, from 24 sen to 48 sen per 1,000 litres and the new rate will take effect from Sept 1.
However, PBAPP general manager Jaseni Maidinsa said about 72% of the 460,966 domestic water consumers in the state would not be affected as only 128,863 of them paid the surcharge last year.
“If your bi-monthly water bill is less than RM21.40, you will not have to pay the surcharge. It only affects consumers who use too much water. We encourage the people to work with us in water conservation efforts,” he said in a statement yesterday.
He said Penang’s domestic water consumption reached an all-time high of 302 litres per capita per day (lcd) as of June 30, compared to 294 lcd last year.
According to the Malaysia Water Industry Guide 2012, the national average in Malaysia was 210 lcd while the United Nations’ recommendation in 2010 was 50 to 100 lcd. Singapore’s per capita consumption in 2012 was 152 lcd.
Jaseni said Penang needed to conserve water to ensure enough supply in future.
“We are a water-stressed state and have to think of the future. As it stands, Kedah is threatening to charge us for raw water and the Federal Government has not started work on the Sungai Perak Raw Water Transfer Project,” he added.
When contacted, Penang Consumer Protection Association president K. Koris Atan praised PBAPP for taking the initiative to promote water conservation, saying consumers in Penang were a spoilt lot who wasted water.
“I give my full support for a water conservation surchage hike. Penang folk are not appreciative of the water supply services and many do not realise that they are paying among the cheapest rates around. It is time for them pay more, especially for water wastage,” he said.
PBAPP first introduced the surchage in November 2010 at 24 sen per 1,000 litres for domestic consumption of above 35,000 litres a month.
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