By Nasuha Badrul Huzaini
SHAH ALAM, Sept 24 — The state government did not receive any complaints pertaining to an alleged case of pollution caused by a red tilapia fish rearing farm or an ecosystem disruption in Sungai Batang Kali.
State executive councillor for environment Hee Loy Sian said the Selangor government, through its agencies, are serious in addressing every pollution issue and immediate measures will be taken to ensure Selangor’s water resources are protected.
He said an initial investigation by The Selangor Water Management Authority (Luas) found that the premises that operates aquaculture activities (red tilapia fish) in an area of 0.41 hectares near Sungai Batang Kali is registered with the Department of Fisheries and has been operating for 10 years.
“Further investigation also found that its activities were not subject to Luas’s Emission or Discharge of Pollutants Licence because the size of the area is less than 50 hectares,” he said in a statement, today.
The statement was made following a news report by Bernama titled ‘Is Sungai Batang Kali doomed to turn into a ‘dead river?’ yesterday.
The report claimed that the river’s water has been getting murkier due to pollutants caused by human activities, forcing the authorities to classify Sungai Batang Kali as a Class II river.
Citing information from residents living nearby, the report claimed that the pollution is mainly caused by a red tilapia fish rearing farm located at the downstream portion of the river, as well as projects currently under development in the upstream area.
Hee said water quality sampling and license compliance monitoring are also carried out by Luas on a regular basis.
“Based on the records of the Department of Environment (2014), the Water Quality Index (IKA) of Sungai Batang Kali is good and is categorised as Class II and still remains to this day.
“Apart from that, based on the IKA record at the Batang Kali water treatment plant (LRA) inlet from 2019 to 2021 in the downstream part, the water is also in good condition, namely Class II.
“Sungai Batang Kali shows an improvement trend every year and there is no disruption at its water supply inlet,” he said.
He added that Luas, together with related agencies such as the Department of Environment, the Department of Fisheries, the Hulu Selangor District Council and the Hulu Selangor Land and District Office, are always committed to conducting further investigation in their jurisdiction.
“This is to ensure that there is no significant negative impact on Sungai Batang Kali’s water quality,” he said.