PBAPP draws up crisis management plan to tackle Sg Muda incidents


GEORGE TOWN: The Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) will present a Sungai Muda Crisis Management Plan to the Penang government following disruptions in supply caused by incidents involving the river in Kedah.

PBAPP chief executive officer K. Pathmanathan said the presentation involved a list of viable and cost-effective water supply engineering solutions to better protect consumers from the effects of incidents in Sungai Muda.

ALSO READ: Floods: Penang braces for cuts as Sg Muda water turns muddy again

"These solutions include solving problems in the 400 million litres per day (MLD) emergency discharge pipeline; raw water pre-treatment works; off-river storage facilities or Takungan Air Pinggiran Sungai (TAPS); a Sungai Dua balancing pond; and upgrading works on the water treatment process,” he said in a statement on Wednesday (Oct 10).

Pathmanathan said the plan was proposed following feedback, complaints and dissatisfaction from the public, who were faced with frequent water supply disruptions.

He said PBAPP served 676,857 consumers in Penang, and nearly 70% of them depend on treated water from the Sungai Dua water treatment plant (LRA), which treats raw water from the river.

"Since July last year, there have been three water crises in Penang. First, the Baling flood that month; a sudden drop in river water level in May this year; and a second Baling flood last month.

ALSO READ: Better water crisis management needed

"All three incidents involve Sungai Muda.

"Without this crisis management plan,water supply in Penang is likely to be affected every time an incident occurs involving the river," he said.

Meanwhile, Pathmanathan said Phase 2B of the Mengkuang Dam Expansion Project, which should have been completed this year, has been rescheduled to early January.

It involves the installation of a 7km long pipeline, 1.6m in diameter, from the Mak Sulong pump house near the Expanded Mengkuang Dam (EMD), to the Sungai Dua canal.

ALSO READ: Penang to implement eight water supply projects over next five years

"Currently, PBAPP can only release a maximum of 300 MLD from EMD and it is not enough. Sungai Dua LRA needs about 1,100 MLD of raw water daily to produce 1,000 MLD of treated water.

"Once Phase 2B is ready, the maximum production capacity will be increased to 600 MLD.

"If we add a 400 MLD emergency discharge pipeline (as proposed under SM-CMP), the total maximum production capacity will be 1,000 MLD, quite close to the requirement for optimal operation," he said.

He also appealed to the Federal Government to expedite the completion of Phase 2B. – Bernama

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