Group calls for task force to conserve water during dry spell

(Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: A consumers association has urged Putrajaya to set up a task force to address any shortage of water following warnings that the current dry season is expected to last until May.

Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam, Selangor president Jacob George said the proposed task force could divide its duties into three phases in preparation for the dry spell ahead.

The first phase would see it meeting with consumer bodies to ensure there is no abuse of water supply.

“The task force can start creating platforms for information exchange and begin talks on water conservation,” he told FMT.

He said the second phase should be to prohibit car wash centres from using fresh water, and to advise members of the public to refrain from activities such as watering plants.

The third would be to carry out major water rationing, as seen in the late 1990s.

“We have to set plans to send water tankers to hospitals and schedule timetables for water distribution at housing areas,” he said.

This follows the call by Association of Water and Energy Research president S Piarapakaran for water rationing to be carried out in a systematic and appropriate manner.

Piarapakaran said careful planning should be done before rationing is imposed. Among the measures he advised was to give consumers at least two weeks’ notice to prevent “panic consumption”.

Johor, Negeri Sembilan, Perak, Kedah, Pahang and Kelantan are most affected by the drought, while the capacity of three dams has dropped: Muda, Kedah, is at 58.9%; Machap, Johor, 55.61%; and Sembrong, Johor at 54%.