Rejuvenating the Kelantan river

PUTRAJAYA: The government has agreed to conduct cloud-seeding operations in Kelantan for three days beginning tomorrow.

The operations aim to address the depletion of the Kelantan River and mitigate the impact of the adverse weather phenomenon and the southwest monsoon, which is expected to persist.

Announcing this here yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi also said that the move followed a request from the Kemubu Agricultural Development Authority (Kada).

The operations will be coordinated through the National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma), Agriculture and Food Security Ministry, Meteorological Department and Royal Malaysian Air Force, Bernama reported.

Ahmad Zahid, who also chairs the Central Disaster Management Committee, said he approved the use of RM5mil from the National Disaster Relief Trust Fund for the operation.

“The three-day operations are aimed at increasing the level of the Kelantan River to irrigate affected agricultural areas.

“The move is an initial measure by the Federal Government to address the depletion of the Kelantan River and mitigate the impact of the hot weather and the southwest monsoon, which is expected to continue until the end of September,” he said in a statement yesterday.Ahmad Zahid said low rainfall recorded from February to April had contributed to the depletion of the river level and disrupted the operation of pumps across the Kada area.

He said for the Kemubu pump house to operate fully, the Kelantan River needs to reach a level of 4.90m.

However, Kada recorded only 2.19m in the second week of April.

“With this move, we hope to provide sufficient water resources in the catchment areas during the hot and dry weather, particularly in Kelantan.

“I also hope that this integrated effort can help increase water capacity in the catchment areas and ensure that the water supply can be delivered to users without any disruptions,” he added.

Ahmad Zahid also urged Nadma and the ministry to provide details of the cloud-seeding operations upon conclusion.

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