Thursday November 11, 2010
RM1.1bil tunnelling for water project to end on time
By SHARIDAN M. ALI
But there’s no resolution yet for proposed treatment plant
HULU LANGAT: The RM1.3bil tunnelling project for Pahang-Selangor interstate raw water transfer is ahead of schedule and will be completed on time.
Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Peter Chin said the physical progress of the tunnelling works as at Oct 31 was 25.8% completed, or 2.78% ahead of schedule.
“The tunnelling works that started in the middle of last year are expected to be completed in 60 months or in the middle of 2014,” he said at the launching of tunnel-boring machine three (TBM3) for the water-transfer project yesterday.
But the project still have a bumpy journey ahead. Chin hoped the Selangor government could render its cooperation to grant the necessary approvals in terms of permits and land use for Langat Water Treatment Plant 2 (Langat 2).
Langat 2 will be used to treat the raw water from Pahang. The Selangor government had said that the treatment plant project need not be carried out hurriedly as there would be no water crisis in the state, at least not until 2019.
Chin was previously reported to have said that the Selangor government was given a deadline until the year-end to grant its approval on the construction of Langat 2.
A water industry analyst told StarBiz that the Selangor government was more concerned about resolving the restructuring of the water industry before addressing the anticipated water crisis.
“As long as the State and Federal Government cannot come to a consensus on the land issue of Langat 2, it is still status quo,” he said.
Commenting on the issue, Chin said the water-transfer project and the restructuring of the water industry were two separate matters.
“As far as the tunnelling works are concerned, we do not have any problem with the Selangor government as most of the works are underground.
“Importantly, this project is for the supply of raw water from Pahang as the demand for water supply is expected to increase in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.
“These places are forecast to experience water supply deficit after 2012,” he said.
On TBM3, Chin said it was the first of three TBMs that would be used in the project.
“All the three (machines) will be able to drill between 600m and 800m a month,” he said.