Singapore's water supply 'still at the mercy of the weather': PM Lee

Channel NewsAsia 14 Sep 16;

SINGAPORE: Use water wisely, as Singapore's water supply is "still at the mercy of the weather", Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in a Facebook post on Wednesday (Sep 14).

In the post, Mr Lee showed a picture of the Linggiu Reservoir in Johor at 25 per cent capacity, which he took on his way to China two weeks ago, due to several years of low rainfall. He juxtaposed it with an image of the same reservoir when full.

"The difference is stark, and worrying," he wrote.

The water levels at the reservoir dropped to a historic low of 35 per cent in April this year.

The water level at Linggiu Reservoir directly affects the amount of water Singapore can draw from the Johor River. Under the 1962 agreement which lasts until 2061, Singapore has full and exclusive right to draw up to 250 million gallons of water daily from the Johor River at the price of 3 sen per 1,000 gallons. The river supplies about half of Singapore's water needs.

Mr Lee said Singapore is "fortunate" to be sheltered from many natural disasters, but its water supply is "still at the mercy of the weather".

He added that Singapore's four "National Taps" - water from local catchment , imported water, reclaimed water or NEWater, and desalinated water - have mitigated the situation, but Singaporeans must still do all they can to conserve water.

"Use water wisely, avoid waste, and recycle wherever possible," he stressed.

- CNA/kk

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