Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Singapore supplying more potable water to Johor since 4 June 2016

Singapore supplies extra water to Johor due to severe dry weather
By Tiffany Fumiko Tay, The Straits Times, 7 Jun 2016

Singapore has been supplying an additional 6 million gallons per day (mgd) of potable water to Johor since Saturday in response to a request for assistance by its water regulatory body, Badan Kawalselia Air Johor (Bakaj).

The month-long arrangement is due to dry weather which has severely affected water levels in Johor's Sungai Layang dam, and will not affect the water supply in Singapore in the short term, national water agency PUB said yesterday.

Dry conditions have also brought water levels in the Linggiu Reservoir to a historic low of 33 per cent, down from 40 per cent in April, PUB said.

The PUB-operated reservoir improves the yield of water from the Johor River, which helps to meet half of Singapore's water needs. The Republic draws up to 250mgd of raw water from the river, and supplies Johor with treated water in return.

The temporary increase, which is being supplied by the PUB-operated Johor River Waterworks, brings Singapore's supply of treated water to its closest neighbour to 22mgd.

From last August to January this year, PUB supplied an additional 5mgd to 6mgd of potable water to Johor under an arrangement similar to the present one.

Professor Asit Biswas, founder of the Third World Centre for Water Management, does not foresee any problems for Singapore with such an arrangement over the short to medium term.

But the distinguished visiting professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore cautioned that Singapore's per capita daily consumption of 150 litres is "far too high".

He said water conservation efforts in Singapore and Johor can be improved through economic, social and other changes.

Johor welcomes potable water aid from Singapore
The Straits Times, 7 Jun 2016

ISKANDAR PUTERI (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Johor has welcomed Singapore's decision to supply additional potable water to the state, its chief minister said.

Mentri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the gesture by the island republic shows its goodwill gesture to help its neighbour during the dry spell that has hit Johor quite hard.

"However, the state government is giving focus to rectifying water woes, and we are in discussions with several agencies on the matter," The Star reported him as saying on Tuesday (June 7).

Mohamed Khaled was asked to comment on the decision by Singapore's national water agency, the Public Utility Board (PUB), to supply an additional six million gallons of water per day for a month to Johor.

This comes after the water regulatory body Badan Kawalselia Air Johor (BAKAJ) requested the aid due to the current dry weather that has affected the water level at the Sungai Layang dam.

Over the years PUB has been supplying 16 million gallons of potable water to Johor daily, the New Straits Times said.

BAKAJ had also requested Singapore to supply extra drinking water between Aug 14 last year to Jan 8 this year, NST said.

Johor River getting saltier
By Jalelah Abu Baker, The Straits Times, 10 Jun 2016

Malaysia's Johor River is becoming more salty while levels at the Linggiu Reservoir are decreasing, said Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli yesterday. Linggiu, which was built upstream of the Johor River in 1994, collects and releases rainwater into the river.

It is operated by Singapore's national water agency PUB and helps to meet half of Singapore's water needs. The reservoir is about 33 per cent full, a historic low. It was 40 per cent full in April, and 80 per cent full at the beginning of last year.

Speaking to reporters during a visit to the Stamford Detention Tank, which is being built to improve flood protection in Singapore, Mr Masagos said: "To wash off the salinity is a challenge. The salinity of the river is increasing and intrudes into our water works."

PUB supplies Johor with 16 million gallons of potable water a day, but increased this amount last Saturday by 6 million gallons at the request of Badan Kawalselia Air Johor, Johor's water regulatory body.

"In providing water to Malaysia, we first ensure that we have adequate supply," said Mr Masagos. "We are able to extract our 250 million gallons per day, on average, over the month, although we are always challenged because of the same weather challenges that both countries are facing." He added that Singapore has asked the Malaysian authorities to look into other ways to top up the Linggiu Reservoir.

The Straits Times reported on May 27 that Johor is looking at two rivers - Sayong River and Ulu Sedili Besar River - for water. Either one of the river projects would take at least two years to complete.

* Singapore supplying more treated water to Malaysia - 17 Jul 2016
Extra six million gallons per day for 3 days at the 'urgent request' of Johor water authority
By Carolyn Khew, The Straits Times, 18 Jul 2016

Singapore has started supplying an additional six million gallons of water per day to Malaysia.

This comes after Johor's water regulatory body Badan Kawalselia Air Johor (Bakaj) made an "urgent request" on Saturday to national water agency PUB, asking for an additional supply of treated water.

"Bakaj requires this water to stabilise its own supply system in Johor Baru after a shutdown on Wednesday, due to pollution in the Johor River," said PUB in a statement yesterday.

The agency added that it started supplying the additional amount of water yesterday and the arrangement will carry on until tomorrow. The extra amount of treated water is being supplied by the PUB-operated Johor River Waterworks.

The latest arrangement, however, will not affect Singapore's own water supply as the agency is able to increase its own local production at short notice, said PUB.

This means getting more water from desalination plants here, as well as reservoirs, to ensure that Singapore's water needs are met.

Last week, Malaysian daily The Star reported that effluents discharged from a palm oil mill have been identified as the main source of high ammonia content in the Johor River.

The pollution caused operations of three water treatment plants in Johor to stop, affecting some 600,000 users in the southern parts of Johor, said the paper.

PUB is entitled to draw 250 million gallons of raw water daily from the Johor River under the 1962 Water Agreement with Malaysia, which expires in 2061.

In exchange, Singapore is obliged to sell five million gallons of treated water to Johor each day. However, PUB has been regularly providing Johor with up to 16 million gallons of water on a daily basis. The new addition of six million gallons of water daily comes on top of this.

This is not the first time that Johor has asked Singapore to supply more water. There have been previous instances where Singapore had to supply additional water to Johor due to "urgent operational needs", said PUB.

Last month, Bakaj also requested that PUB provide an additional six million gallons of water per day for a month, following dry weather which severely affected water levels in Johor's Sungai Layang dam.

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