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People's Daily Online>>World >> Asia/Oceania

Declining river pollution offers economic benefit

(Xinhua)

08:16, March 22, 2012

WEST JAVA, Indonesia, March 21 (Xinhua) - As many rivers in big cities in Indonesia have been heavily polluted, the reduction of level of the pollution is expected to decrease cost for water treatment for water supply, official has said.

Low level of the pollution could decrease the amount of chemical compounds and other materials for the treatment that finally decrease the price of the product for consumers, Pian Sopian, the CEO of water utility of the capital of West Java province of Bandung told Xinhua in an interview.

Should the move to decrease the river pollution be implemented well across the country it could help ease the burden of the people particularly middle and lower class, as their purchasing power may decline by the government plan to increase about one- third oil price on April 1 and is likely followed by electricity tariff hike by up to 10 percent next year.

The oil price hike is forecast to push inflation acceleration by up to 6.8 percent this year, according to the Central Bank Governor Darmin Nasution, overshooting the government target of 5. 3 percent.

The CEO urged all shareholders, including households along the rivers and industries, to take parts on the effort reducing pollution.

In the West Java province all the seven main rivers were classified as heavily polluted from pollutant resulted by households and industries, said Setiawan Wangsaatmadja, head of West Java Provincial Environmental Management Agency told Xinhua in West Java provincial capital of Bandung on Tuesday.

Feces and gray water from households contain organic and chemical pollutants; industries dispose of pollutants containing metal elements, while agriculture produces chemical pollutant, said Wangsaatmadja.

The increasing pollution had increased funds needed for the water treatment by up to 10 percent annually in recent years, but should the pollution level be decreased the amount of chemical compounds and other materials for the treatment would also decline that trim the price of the product, said Sopian.

"The decrease of the pollution level would trim the cost of water treatment for water supply so that it is expected to decrease our product price to the community as we are not a profit oriented company," he said.

The waters from Cipundung river in Bandung city was one-third of the 27,000 meter cubic per second water resources at the water utility facility, said Sopian. Currently to cost of treatment has jumped to 24 billion rupiah (some 2.64 million U.S. dollars) annually, he said.

The efforts to reduce the pollution that ease cost for water treatment would smooth the government plan of building massive infrastructure to spur economic growth. The government has struggled to get over 140 billion U.S. dollar funds for it by up to 2014, which the government can only provide one third of the funds and the rest is expected from investors or other parties.


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