EIGHT out of 11 states in peninsular Malaysia are exposed to water supply risks this year, according to a panellist of a webinar entitled “Making $ense of Treated Wastewater”.
“This will prolong if we are not careful, ” said Malaysian Water Association president Datuk Abdul Kadir Mohd Din at the online event.
Organised by Indah Water Konsortium (IWK) Sdn Bhd in collaboration with Star Media Group Bhd, the webinar was moderated by Taylor’s University Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences lecturer Dr Jovy Lai Zee Wei.
Among the states at risk, said Abdul Kadir, were Perlis, Kedah, Penang, Selangor and Melaka.
“We are blessed with abundant water but our current management of water resources needs improvement.
“We need to have better and more efficient energy in the raw water source, ” he highlighted.
Citing statistics by the National Water Services Commission (SPAN), he added that Perlis had the highest water consumption of 300 litres per capita per day.
Selangor’s consumption was more than 200 litres per capita per day while Kelantan was the lowest.
Labuan and Pahang use less than 200 litres per capita per day.
“Wastewater is a term used to describe waste material. It includes industrial liquid waste and sewage waste that is collected in towns and urban areas then treated at urban wastewater treatment plants.
“The treatment is a process to convert wastewater, which is water no longer needed or suitable for its most recent use, into an effluent that can be either returned to the water cycle with minimal environmental issues or reused, ” Abdul Kadir elaborated.
He said wastewater treatment plants were one of the most expensive industries in terms of energy requirements.
Large amounts of energy was needed to treat wastewater for reuse or disposal, he noted.
According to the International Energy Agency, global electricity consumption for wastewater collection and treatment would require over 60% more electricity in 2040 compared to 2014, as the amount in need of treatment increased, he shared.
While sharing experiences in Western countries, Abdul Kadir said, “It is important to view wastewater treatment plants not merely as waste disposal but rather as resource recovery facilities.
“This means they have the potential to produce clean water, recover nutrients and sale materials, reduce reliance on fossil fuels through energy-efficient processes as well as renewable energy production.
“The water sector in Malaysia is in a nascent phase, with unique opportunities for water reuse to be implemented on a wider scale as a sustainable practice within a framework of integrated water management.”
While the obvious approach is to reclaim wastewater as additional resource for water supply, he said, there were…
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