Why can’t we introduce NEWater directly into our taps?
NEWater is not directly channelled to our households and into our tap water currently, as we are mindful of consumers’ perception about the consumption of used water that has been treated. A small percentage of NEWater is blended with raw water in the reservoir. The raw water from the reservoir goes through treatment at the waterworks before it is supplied to consumers as tap water. There is no immediate need for PUB to directly supply NEWater to households as PUB is currently managing the water demand holistically from other sources such as local catchment areas, imported water, and desalinated water. For more information on NEWater technology, please visit PUB’s website here.
What is our dependency on imported water?
Under the 1962 Water Agreement, PUB has the full and exclusive right and liberty to draw off, take, impound and use the water
from the Johor River, up to a maximum of 250 million gallons per day. Imported water currently meets about half of Singapore’s
needs and remains an important source of water. However, we are already feeling the effects of climate change and we could
face more extreme weather vagaries of dry spells or droughts. Considering that imported water is dependent on weather, we
need to progressively build up weather-resilient sources – i.e. NEWater and desalination to ensure the sufficiency and resilience
of the water system. For more information, you may wish to visit the PUB's website here.
What are the benefits of the ABC Waters programme?
The ABC Waters Programme is part of PUB’s strategic objective to bring Singaporeans closer to water, so that they can better
appreciate and cherish this precious resource. At the same time, by creating new community spaces, ABC Waters projects
enhance liveability in residential areas, and improve the experience along the waterways, in line with the vision of transforming
Singapore into a ‘City of Gardens and Water’. You may read more about the ABC Waters programme here.
What are the main uses of NEWater?
1. Non-Potable Use
As it is ultra-clean, NEWater is used mainly for industrial and air-con cooling purposes at wafer fabrication plants, industrial estates and commercial buildings. The biggest users of NEWater are wafer fabrication plants, which require water quality that is even more stringent than water for drinking. 2. Indirect Potable UseNEWater is also added to our reservoirs to blend with the raw water collected at the reservoirs. The raw water from the
reservoir is then treated at the waterworks before it is being supplied to consumers as tap water. For more information, you may wish to visit the PUB's website here.
What is the Government doing to alleviate flooding?
With climate change, we can expect more intense rainfalls to be the norm in future. PUB has taken a system-wide approach to introduce flexibility and adaptability to Singapore’s drainage system to cope with higher intensity storms.
Known as the “Source-Pathway-Receptor” approach, measures are not only carried out along the pathway (e.g. through widening and deepening of drains and canals) but also implemented at the source where runoff is generated (e.g. through on-site detention) and at the receptor where floods may occur (e.g. through platform levels, crest protection and flood barriers).The Government has invested $1.2 billion in drainage improvement works since 2012, and will spend another $500 million in the next two to three years to upgrade more drains. Despite these continuous efforts in upgrading our drainage infrastructure, we cannot expect zero floods as the design capacity of the drains may be exceeded temporarily during very intense rainfall. This is especially so as climate change impacts intensify.Hence, in addition to widening and deepening of drains, PUB continues to work with developers/building owners to develop and maintain the necessary drainage and flood protection system within their premises. For example, they mandated developer/business owners to build on-site detention tanks for all new and redevelopments projects that are larger than 0.2hectares (2,000 square metres) and stipulated higher platform levels, crest protection and flood barriers at the receptors where floods may occur.Everyone has a part to play in protecting Singapore from flash floods and building resilience to climate risks. For more information, you may wish to visit the PUB’s website here.