Environment ministry directs its agencies to be prepared for floods

Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man says all departments under the Environment and Water Ministry have been instructed to be fully prepared for the upcoming monsoon season. – EPA pic, September 22, 2022.

ALL departments and agencies under the Environment and Water Ministry have been instructed to be fully prepared for the monsoon season, which is due to begin soon, minister Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said.

He said among the measures that are being taken by the Irrigation and Drainage Department are the installation of water pumps, maintenance of sluice gates and deepening of retention ponds in locations at risk of flooding.

“We (the ministry) are checking to ensure that all our assets are functional,” he told reporters after launching the Sungai Dungun estuary conservation project at Bijangga Civic Hall in Dungun today.

“Hundreds of flood ‘hotspots’ have been identified nationwide. We have installed mobile and permanent water pumps in some areas and carried out maintenance of sluice gates.”

He said the ministry is building about 50 sabo dams in areas prone to water surge incidents nationwide.

He said their purpose is to control sediment outflow by collecting incoming sediment and allowing water to gradually flow out, thus reducing the occurrence of a water surge.

Earlier, Tuan Ibrahim said the estuary conservation project, which would commence next week, is expected to be completed by March 2027.

He said the RM242.97 million project includes work on deepening navigation channels, construction of breakwater and retaining wall structures, construction of groynes or hydraulic structures built perpendicularly to reduce the impact of waves on the beach as well as the construction of lighthouses.

“The objective of this project is to prevent sedimentation at the Sungai Dungun estuary, which is unsafe for fishing and tourist boats sailing to Tenggol Island,” he said.

“The situation worsens during the northeast monsoon season when strong winds and big waves will cause damage to the boats,” he said. 

“In addition, sedimentation at the river mouth prevents water from flowing to the sea and this is the cause of floods.

“We hope the project will reduce the risk of coastal flooding being faced by nearly 5,000 residents.” – Bernama, September 22, 2022.

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