#El Nino* Putrajaya lake may be new source of water in facing phenomenon

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SEPANG (June 25): Putrajaya Lake, besides being a tourist draw and a venue for water sports, may be a new source of water supply for consumers in the Klang Valley, if water in the dams reach critical levels due to the El Nino phenomenon, which is expected to hit the country at the end of this month.

Energy, Green Technology and Water Deputy Minister, Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid, said other lakes being considered for the same purpose, included the Mines in Seri Kembangan, if the Health Ministry confirmed that water in these lakes were safe for consumption.

He said that this alternative source of water was among the proposals to be tabled at the first meeting of the El Nino Committee, chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin this June 30.

"Besides that, we plan to obtain underground water to supplement the water supply needed, whether for domestic or industrial use during the dry season.

"The El Nino Committee, however, would need to first obtain data on water levels in the dams throughout the country, before making a decision," he told a news conference, after officially opening Tune Hotel klia2, here today.

Asked whether water rationing would return, Mahdzir said that the ministry would need clarification from the Meteorological Department on the change of the southwest monsoon in the second week of July.

He said that the hot weather experienced since last week, was not due to the El Nino phenomenon but caused by the southwest monsoon from the Indian Ocean.

"In the second week of July, we will see whether the southwest monsoon turns its course from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific Ocean and if this happens, the El Nino phenomenon has hit us.

"The El Nino phenomenon, which causes prolonged drought, would have a big impact on our country, involving five sectors, namely domestic, agriculture, industry, power generation and health," he said.