KUALA LUMPUR – The government aims to reduce water consumption to 180 litres per person per day by 2025, said Environment and Water Minister Dato Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man.
He said that this was because the high water consumption of Malaysians, at 219 litres per person, daily, compared with the recommended rate of 160 litres per day.
“The awareness level among Malaysians plays an important role in reducing water consumption because they (the people) currently feel complacent as we have abundant water resources.
“In fact, there are some places where big pipes burst but there are no reports lodged, this is a waste so awareness is needed immediately,” he said when winding up the debate on the motion of thanks for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s royal address at the Dewan Rakyat sitting Aug 3.
He said that the use of water-saving gadgets installed in water pipes can also help minimise the use of the resource, and people are also advised to utilise rainwater to water their plants and clean cars to reduce wastage of clean water.
Replying to an interjection by Datuk Dr Xavier Jayakumar (PH-Kuala Langat) who suggested the government to review the water tariff rate as it was allegedly low, resulting in people failing to appreciate it, Tuan Ibrahim said the government did not intend to implement the matter after taking into account the burden of the people following the COVID -19 outbreak.
“I agree that the water tariff in several states is very low and some states have not reviewed the water tariffs for 38 years, but the government is not ready to increase the burden of the people who are struggling with COVID-19, including layoffs and so on,” he said.
In another development, Tuan Ibrahim said that the government during the Cabinet meeting on July 24 decided not to proceed with the proposed drafting of the Transboundary Haze Act.
The decision was made after taking into account Singapore’s experience and feedback from legal experts including the Attorney-General’s Chambers.
“Under the law, proposed by the previous Pakatan Harapan government, action can only be taken against Malaysian-owned companies if it or its subsidiaries abroad were found to be involved in causing transboundary haze pollution,” he said.
He said that that the government believes it is better to work with neighbouring countries and all ASEAN members to address the problem together.
The Dewan Rakyat sitting continues today.