KUALA LUMPUR: More than RM300 billion will be needed for long-term solutions to the country’s flood problems over the next 50 years, environment and water minister Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man told the Dewan Rakyat today.
He said this would include projects to develop water infrastructure such as flood mitigation systems and embankments, as well as prevention of coastal erosion.
“The ministry believes that through the proposed short- and long-term solutions, we can minimise the impact of floods in terms of property damage or loss of lives,” he said.
Among the solutions, he said, was to introduce the Water Sector Adaptation Act to better protect the country’s drainage and coastal infrastructure. Under the Act, the ministry will propose a special fund to increase the adaptive capacity of the water sector and coastal areas through infrastructure that takes into account climate change.
Tuan Ibrahim said other measures include a National Adaptation Centre to coordinate policies and climate change adaptation, integration of disaster risks and prevention of loss and damage due to the effects of climate change involving vulnerable sectors.
“Also, to increase the capacity of floodwater reservoirs through riverside reservoir projects and dams for flood mitigation and water resources purposes.
“Besides that, the use of nature-based solutions such as river trails to encourage community involvement in river protection, cleaning and conservation activities,” he said.
Tuan Ibrahim said the ministry was also open to learning from the experience of other countries in flood management.
The Netherlands, for example, had offered to send the Dutch Risk Reduction team to Malaysia to assess the impact of floods in the country and propose appropriate solutions.
“The ministry is in discussions with various parties to make this collaboration a success,” he said.