Third World Centre for Water Management

Communications

Urban water management in Singapore

Cecilia Tortajada

Asian Water | April, 2006

Singapore is one of the very few countries that looks at its supply sources in its totality. In addition to import of water from Malaysia, it has made a determined attempt to protect its water sources, expand its available sources by desalination and reuse of wastewater, and use technological developments to increase water availability, improve water quality management and steadily lower production and management costs. PUB, at present, has an in-house Centre for Advanced Water Technology, with about 50 expert staff members who provide it with necessary R&D support.

Over the years, catchment management has received increasing emphasis. Protected catchment areas are well demarcated and gazetted, and no pollution-causing activities are allowed in such protected areas. In land-scarce Singapore, protected catchment classification covers less than 5% of the area.

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