Linggiu Reservoir was nearly empty, but sees water levels rising again
Don't forget, water prices will go up again later this year.
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Some of us pressed the panic button back when it was reported that the water levels of Linggiu Reservoir were getting dangerously low.
In Nov. 5, 2016, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong revealed that the reservoir was only 22 per cent full.
And in Jan. 2017, Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan stated that the water level had gone up, but only to 27 per cent.
But why should you care?
The reservoir, located in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, supplies more than half of Singapore’s water needs.
So if it did run dry, we might have to resort to drastic measures. Imagine taking the MRT to work with fellow unshowered commuters.
However, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli has some good news for us.
Speaking in Parliament during the Committee of Supply debate on March 6, he said that the Linggiu Reservoir had replenished its water levels back up to 63 per cent.
This was due to heavier rainfall and the completion of the Johor River Barrage, which was discussed by PM Lee and PM Najib during their meeting in Jan. 2018.
However, Masagos sounded a note of warning and said that the stock level could drop again quickly.
The issue is not just an environmental matter, but also a bi-lateral one given that Malaysia supplies most of our water. Said Masagos:
“Should Linggiu Reservoir fail, it will pose major problems for both Malaysia and Singapore. Water is both a sensitive and strategic issue for the two countries. This is why water is often discussed when our two Prime Ministers meet.”
Save water or else
But Singaporeans can also pat themselves on the back for doing their part to save water.
Masagos revealed that per capita use of water in Singapore dropped in 2017.
“I am encouraged by the drop in Singapore’s household water consumption from 148 litres in 2016 to 143 litres per person per day in 2017.”
Perhaps the government’s message of the importance of water conservation got through to the public after all.
Or maybe it was because of the 30 per cent hike in the price of water, which was first implemented in July 2017 and will be complete in July 2018.
Top image from Gov.sg.