KUALA LUMPUR: The government has allocated RM52 billion in an effort to preserve the quality of raw water supply in the country, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak.
Following the completion and launch of the Pantai 2 sewerage treatment plant (STP), today, Najib said the government aims to complete 77 sewage treatment plants by 2040 in line with the National Sewerage Strategic Plan.
"So far the government has completed 46 sewage treatment plants in the country," he said during his speech at the launch of the Pantai 2 STP and Pantai Ecopark here.
The premier pointed out Pantai 2 STP, the first underground sewage treatment plant in the country and the biggest in the Asia-Pacific region with a 12ha recreational park built on top has changed the common perception among the rakyat.
"The perception is that sewage treatment plants are smelly, dirty and an eyesore.
"But we have gathered here to witness a plant that is both clean and modern, an innovation by the government for the rakyat's convenience," he said.
Najib said the government has subsidised 90% of RM2.37 billion spent to operate and maintain the country's sewerage network.
"For instance the cost of sewerage treatment per month charged by Indah Water Konsortium (IWK) for a terrace house is RM8 while at a low cost house is only RM2.
"While the actual cost per household is at RM20 per month. This is hidden cost that the government bears for the rakyat," he said.
Also present during the launch were Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry (KeTTHA) Minister Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar and other dignitaries.
The largest in the Asia-Pacific region, the plant uses the state of the art Advance Anaerobic-Anoxic-Oxic (Advanced AAO) which is eco-friendly and enables it to increase the quality and quantity of the treated effluent for effective usage.
The KeTTHA project which was built by BEWG (M) Sdn Bhd and costs RM983 million is expected to support a population of 1.42 million people in the region up to 2035.
Pantai Ecopark, meanwhile, is equipped with a community centre, jogging track, futsal court, football field and other amenities.