Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) chief executive officer, Datuk Jaseni Maidinsa, called for urgent action to be taken by Kedah and the Federal Government to ensure there would be no water rationing in Penang and Kedah.
“The volume of the 160-billion-litre-Muda Lake was only 7.44% on Feb 13 and as such the level of Sungai Muda is highly dependent on only the other reservoir, the 120 billion-litre Beris Lake,” he said yesterday.
“The volume of this lake was reported to be 69.87% on Feb 6 and we have not been able to obtain more recent readings for the Beris Lake.”
Jaseni said that to sustain the Sungai Muda river level, the Beris Lake is releasing about 864 million litres of water per day (MLD).
“The Sungai Muda level at Penang’s Lahar Tiang intake was at the alert level of 1.77m, lower than the normal level of 2.0m.
“If the Beris Lake does not have sufficient water to release and sustain the Sungai Muda level, there will be a widespread water crisis in southern Kedah and Penang,” he said.
Among several countermeasures taken by the PBAPP is drawing down on the strategic reserves of the 73.5 billion-litre Mengkuang Lake to complement raw water abstraction from Sungai Muda.The effective capacity of the Mengkuang Lake is 72.8%, enough to support Penang’s raw water needs until July.
Jaseni added that the PBAPP was only able to draw down a maximum of 300 MLD from the Mengkuang Lake while Penang’s average daily consumption of treated water was 843 MLD in 2019.
“As such, although we have counter-measures in the form of the Mengkuang Lake, we are still highly dependent on raw water from Sungai Muda on a daily basis,” he said.
Did you find this article insightful?