June 30, 2008

Call for Stiffer Penalties for Polluters

SHAH ALAM: Stiffer penalties for water polluters is a must if the country is to have enough clean water said a major water industry group.

This is because water companies are finding it more problematic to harvest water as more rivers are being polluted by unscrupulous factories.

Water Association of Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya president Tan Sri Rozali Ismail said the Klang Valley's supply of treatable water was close to critical.

Rozali, who is also Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Syabas) executive chairman said, this year, Syabas could only process between 50 and 60 per cent of raw water from rivers due to pollution.

"If we do not curb pollution we will not have enough water to supply to consumers," he said.

Rozali said the government should amend laws on water pollution to impose stiffer penalties on polluters to better protect this dwindling resource.

He also called for these penalties to include shutting down factories found guilty of dumping into rivers.

"The best solution is to amend the law and impose higher penalties for these offenders as they are not affected by low fines and would continue polluting."

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