The central government plans to build a water catchment and proces-sing facility at Petanu River in Gianyar, Bali, to cope with the predicted water crisis in the south of the island in 2015, an official said on Friday.
Budi Yuwono, an official of the Public Works Ministry, said the infrastructure would be able to generate 300 liters of water per second to be channeled to southern areas including Denpasar, Badung and Gianyar in 2013.
The project, with support from the Japan International Cooperation Agency, already began in 2007, with costs budgeted at Rp 425.6 billion (US$48.6 million) but work has not been completed due to funding problems.
It is estimated that the remaining work will cost around Rp 391 billion, Rp 107.3 billion of which will be provided by the central government from the 2012 state budget.
The sum from the central government is allocated for the construction of the water’s main distribution network, while the Denpasar, Badung and Gianyar administrations will give Rp 63 billion, Rp 42 billion and Rp 21 billion, respectively, for the supporting network.
The financial figures for each regency have been adjusted according to the number of installations each requires. Denpasar will have 10,500 installations, Badung 7,000 installations and Gianyar 3,500 installations.
“We hope the administrations can cooperate in building this infrastructure. We have allocated Rp 107.3 billion from the state budget, and we expect them to share the rest of the budget,” Budi said in his presentation to the Bali administrations on Friday.
He said Bali and East Nusa Tenggara were two provinces among the government’s priorities in providing clean water for urban areas.
“We have allocated a total of Rp 3.2 trillion for clean water projects, but most of the funding will go to village areas.”
Bali is given priority since the island has started to experience clean water shortages amid a number of international events that it is hosting.
“Bali is also a tourist destination that should not experience a shortage of water; it is a basic facility,” Budi said.
Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika emphasized the importance of this project to anticipate a clean water crisis in southern Bali.
“Based on research, the southern part of Bali will experience more droughts in the coming years. We should be prepared for this.”
JICA research in 2006 predicted that Denpasar, Badung and Gianyar will experience a shortfall of drinking water of 1,500 liters per second due to the growing number of houses and tourist accommodation facilities.
It also recommended the building of water infrastructure at Unda River in Klungkung, Penet River in Tabanan and Petanu River that has the potential to provide thousands of liters of water per second.
Pastika added that his administration should discuss the project with the provincial legislative council to get the budget approval.
The project was also welcomed by the three regency administrations, but all of them said they had to discuss with the council first.
I Ketut Winarta, head of Denpasar’s Public Works Agency, agreed that the water supply from Petanu River would be expected to be able to fulfill the clean water needs of the city.