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Singapore is a small and populous country, and to sustain its people and economy it requires resources originating from an area many times its size for food, water, energy, and other resources. This paper considers the unique situation of transboundary sharing of water supplies between Singapore and Malaysia, a case in which the parties do not share the same water basin. Singapore has to buy water from Malaysia in order to meet its domestic and economic needs, but many Malaysian rivers are polluted and water demand in Malaysia itself has increased substantially because of population growth and changes in lifestyle. Consequently, Malaysian authorities face difficulties in meeting their own country’s needs. During past dry spells in Malaysia, Singapore became a target of resentment when Malaysians experienced water shortage and rationing. Attempts by Singapore to negotiate a new water agreement for water supply beyond 2061 have been rejected by the Malaysian government. This situation has, since the 1990s, led Singapore to pursue other sources to achieve water self-sufficiency. To meet its water demand, Singapore has embarked on the use of ‘NEWater’, which is recycled treated sewerage effluent, and on the desalination of seawater.
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- Transboundary Urban Water: The Case of Singapore and Malaysia
Yue Choong Kog
- Springer Netherlands
- Chapter 26