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Published: Tuesday July 20, 2010 MYT 12:09:00 PMUpdated: Tuesday July 20, 2010 MYT 12:24:14 PM
By EDWARD R. HENRY
SHAH ALAM: Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said Tuesday that there was enough water supply for all consumers in the state and Kuala Lumpur till 2019.
“The Selangor government has consulted several experts and, based on our calculations of population growth rate, past and present water consumption rates, current production capacity and water levels in the dams, there will be more than sufficient water supply to meet the demands of Selangor and Kuala Lumpur consumers well up to 2019, he said in a press release Tuesday.
He was refuting the Federal Government’s contention that Selangor would have to initiate water rationing by 2014.
Khalid said the Federal government’s Pahang-Selangor water transfer project should not be rushed.
It would become necessary in later years and could be given a lead time of three years for construction.
“The Selangor government recommends that the implementation of the Pahang-Selangor water transfer project should only begin in 2016,” he said.
However, the Federal government intended to proceed with this project even though the original estimated cost of RM2bil had ballooned to an estimated RM8bil in total, Khalid said.
He added that the decision to take up this project was based on the Federal government’s projection that there would be insufficient water produced to meet the growing consumption demand in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur.
Recently, Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Peter Chin Fa Kui and the Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Muhyiddin Yassin had said Selangor government’s delayed land approvals for the related projects could cause water rationing in the state.
Khalid said Peter Chin and Muhyiddin might have been misled in to believing that water rationing might begin in 2014.
Khalid said that while the state was convinced that the Pahang-Selangor water project was needed, “we also believe there is no need to treat this project as a priority or in a rush manner without regard for a holistic understanding of the water resources in Selangor, including taking into consideration the water restructuring process.”
“We also believe that other alternatives should be prioritised instead of a large, lucrative construction contract like Pahang-Selangor water transfer.
Khalid added that if the project was rushed into, the country would incur further national debt which it could ill afford.
On alternatives, Khalid suggested rainwater harvesting and exploring lakes and underground water technologies.
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