Friday, September 14, 2007

posted by NEO SEP060157

In support of Vision 2020 (towards achieving developed nation status), Malaysia will conserve and manage its water resources to ensure adequate and safe water for all (including the environment). Such is the Malaysian vision for water in the 21st century.
The key objectives of the vision are as follows:

Water for people: all have access to safe, adequate and affordable water supply, hygiene and sanitation.

Water for food and rural development: provision of sufficient water that will ensure national food security and promote rural development.

Water for economic development: provision of sufficient water to spur and sustain economic growth within the context of a knowledge-based economy and e-commerce.

Water for the environment: protection of the water environment to preserve water resources (both surface water and groundwater) and natural flow regimes, bio-diversity and the cultural heritage, along with mitigation of water-related hazards.

The set of initiatives that need to take place in order to achieve the key objectives of the vision is evaluated based on the four challenges towards a better water future, which are (a) managing our water resources efficiently and effectively (addressing both quantity and quality aspects), (b) moving towards integrated river basin management, (c) translating awareness into political will and capacity and (d) moving towards adequate, safe and affordable water services, as will befit developed-nation status by 2020.

The actions for a better water future are also determined based on milestones and targets and they have to do with (a) institutional and legal aspects, (b) participatory approach in the decision-making process, (c) development of innovative technologies, (d) efficient use of water resources, (e) extensive research and development, (f) shift from water-supply to water-demand management, (g) establishment of river basin organizations, (h) integrated water resources management, (i) promotion of water awareness and water education, (j) promotion of networking in the water sector, (k) good databases and dissemination, (l) resource assessment, monitoring and protection, (m) water ecosystems protection, (n) flood and drought contingency plans, (o) water-quality management, (p) frequent dialogues with the stakeholders, (q) a Water Sector Master Plan and (r) formation of a National Water Institute.

The way forward to realize the national water vision is to establish associated programmes in the Eighth Malaysian Plan (2001-2005) and the Third Outline Perspective Plan (2001-2010)

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