Supply of treated water in Negri and Johor under threat

Supply of treated water in Negri and Johor under threat
Water level at Gemencheh dam.

PETALING JAYA - Water levels at the Gemencheh Dam in Negri Sembi­lan and several rivers in Johor have dipped, threatening the supply of treated water to several areas.

Water Services Commission chairman Datuk Ismail Kasim said the level at the Gemencheh Dam had fallen to 93.9m - below the critical level of 95m - putting the water reserve at only 19.23 per cent.

The dam provides raw water to the Gemencheh treatment plant which supplies to consumers in Tampin and Rembau.

"Currently, the plant only produces 20.5mil litres per day compared to capacity of 45.5mil litres per day," he said in a statement here yesterday.

Ismail said the state government - through its water supply operator Syarikat Air Negri Sembilan Sdn Bhd (Sains) - had resorted to procu­ring 9mil litres per day of treated water from Malacca for 5,300 user accounts in Tampin and Batang Melaka.

He added that Sains was also planning to provide 18mil litres of treated water per day from the Sawah Raja plant in Rembau as well as build a pump and pipe station with a capacity to pump 54mil litres of raw water per day from Sungai Jelai in Johol to Gemencheh Dam.

"The construction of the station has started," he said, adding that this was expected to be completed before December.

The level at several rivers in Johor had also reportedly fallen, with Sembrong Kiri River in Kluang reaching the critical mark while the Sungai Lebam Dam had been put on the alert list.

The Sembrong Kiri River, which provides raw water to the Sembrong Timur treatment plant, has decreased from 32mil litres per day to 26mil litres per day. It supplies water to Kluang.

"The state water operator, SAJ Holdings (SAJH), is monitoring the situation and is trying to redistribute the supply from other nearby systems. If the situation worsens, water rationing will be considered," he said.

The Government, said Ismail, was also in the midst of building Sungai Kahang Dam to tackle water shortage in Johor and it was expected to be completed in June 2017.

The state government, through SAJH, was also in the midst of increasing the capacity of the Sungai Kahang water treatment plant for Kluang residents.

"On Monday, the water level at the Sungai Lebam Dam was 11.55m with the critical level at 12.27m with a reserve of 47.04 per cent," he said, adding that the treatment plant was still operating as usual.

In Kuala Lumpur, Deputy Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said the Federal Government was working hard to finalise the restructuring of the Selangor water supply agreement.

"The minister (Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili) had said the Government is optimistic that the main agreement can be finalised by Monday. So far, we are on track.

"Only one or two items have yet to be resolved but we are confident," he told reporters after attending the Chinese New Year open house hosted by Tenaga Nasional Berhad at its headquarters in Bangsar yesterday.

The transfer of water assets should have been completed in mid-January but this had been extended twice with the latest deadline being next Monday.

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