WWF-Malaysia and Royal Bank of Canada Join Forces with Government Agencies for Malaysia’s First Ever Journey of Water
The three-day journey in Malaysia will begin this 21 April 2018 by trekking to one of the main sources of water in Klang Valley, and subsequently conclude in the heart of Kuala Lumpur on 23 April 2018. The expedition, focusing primarily on the Klang and Selangor river basins, aims to provide real-time experience and learning of the actual journey that water takes to a selected group of 30 Water Heroes, comprising of RBC employees, social influencers, water related government agencies, water supply and wastewater operators, water experts, and selected media partners. The water heroes will share their personal reflections and learning throughout the journey via their social media platforms, which will be used as the main form of communication and outreach for the Journey of Water 2018 in Malaysia.
“This journey is a collaborative effort to increase public awareness on the dire need to conserve freshwater resources and its ecosystems, the close relationship and dependency of people on water, highlight the severe threats faced by freshwater resources in Malaysia, and understand the key role of nature-based solutions and green infrastructure in current water conservation efforts. In essence, it is a call for attention and action on the need for better care of our water catchments, river systems, and water resources,” said Dato’ Dr Dionysius Sharma, Executive Director/CEO of WWF-Malaysia.
Some of the water agencies involved in this novel expedition are the National Water Services Commission (SPAN), Selangor Waters Management Authority (LUAS), Department of Fisheries (DOF), Department of Irrigation and Drainage (JPS), Forestry Department (JPSM), Air Selangor, Indah Water Konsortium (IWK), Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), Hulu Selangor District Council (MDHS), Kuala Selangor District Council (MDKS), Department of Orang Asli Development (JAKOA), and Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor (SPLASH).
RBC, WWF-Malaysia’s key corporate partner for the Journey of Water 2018, is no stranger to water conservation efforts. Globally, RBC is actively involved in initiatives that support water conservation, watershed protection, and access to clean drinking water. In Malaysia, RBC’s continuous support to safeguard freshwater in a bid to reduce unnecessary water wastage has been instrumental in increasing awareness and better water practices amongst urban communities in the Klang Valley.
“RBC is proud to partner with WWF-Malaysia to help protect the world’s most precious resource: fresh water. Growing demand for water, detrimental discharges into our waterways that exceed their buffering capabilities, dry spells brought about by climate change and inefficient consumption are amongst the contributing factors to shortages in the Klang Valley. By promoting responsible use and instilling knowledge on good water conservation practices, we hope to safeguard local water for future generations,” shared Andy Allen, Managing Director, Malaysia, RBC Investor and Treasury Services.
Over the recent years, Malaysia has seen a higher frequency and more intense dry spells, which has affected the availability of water resources in many parts of the country. Residents in Klang Valley particularly would remember the 2014 water crisis, which was reported as the worst since the 1998 water crisis. The substantial drop in water levels in five Selangor reservoir dams brought about scheduled water rationing that lasted for several months in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur.
The Klang Valley is currently home to about 7.2 million people or more than a fifth of Malaysia's total population. The average water usage per person in Malaysia is over 200 litres/day, which is among the highest in the region. About 97% of Malaysia’s raw water supply for agriculture, domestic and industrial needs are derived from surface water sources, primarily rivers.
Now, more than ever, Malaysians should remember the urgent need to take greater responsibility in the way we manage our water resources. It is timely that we reflect on water, a precious yet unlimited resource that is critical for survival but often underappreciated. A critical step in ensuring the country’s water security is by first changing the way we think about and manage water on a daily basis.
WWF-Malaysia urges Malaysians to implement good water sustainability practices, be more conscious of water usage and wastage, and thus reduce our collective water footprint for a sustainable future. To learn more and support the Journey of Water, please follow our water heroes online as they share their personal reflections and experiences (check out #JourneyOfWater on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook and bit.ly/MYJOW2018).
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For more information, please contact:
Communications Manager, Freshwater Conservation Programme