Monday, 21 January 2013

Pollutants in river could be waste from mills or unknown sources

The pollutants found in Sungai Semenyih could be industrial waste from palm oil mills or unknown sources along the river and its tributaries, said Konsortium Abass.

Its chairman Suhaimi Kamaralzaman said it had yet to identify the responsible party as there were quite a number of mills and factories upstream of the Sungai Semenyih Water Treatment Plant at Jenderam Hilir.

“The unknown discharge polluted the water and resulted in a foul smell which could not be treated by the plant. It had to be shut down to prevent the polluted water from producing an undesirable quality of treated water,” he said in a statement yesterday.

He said its raw water pumps, with a capacity of 682 million litres per day (mld), had to stop operation for around two and a half hours to allow the polluted water to pass by.

“Therefore, for two and a half hours stoppage, the quantity of water that we could not treat was at least 71 mld,” he said.

Suhaimi said preventing such incidents in future required coordinated efforts from the authorities, including Lembaga Urus Air Selangor and the Department of Environment, to conduct regular and random inspections.

“As for Abass, we have our water quality inspection team, which carries out regular monitoring of raw water along Sungai Semen­yih and its tributaries,” he said, adding that random checks were also carried out.

The plant currently produces between 660 and 665 mld of treated water per day.

The plant had stopped operations for around seven hours on Monday following the discovery of the polluted water, which resulted in water supply shortage to some 100,000 consumers in the districts of Petaling, Hulu Langat, Sepang, Klang and Kuala Langat.

Syabas corporate affairs executive director Abdul Halem Mat Som said that the water supply disruption would end in less than a week.


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