Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Report details public water sources



Report details public water sources

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A girl filters rainwater into a jar in Kampong Thom province’s Stoung district. Heng Chivoan

Report details public water sources

The General Population Census of Cambodia 2019 has provided detailed information regarding sources of clean drinking water for the provincial populations across the Kingdom, determining which regions depend on rivers, streams, lakes and ponds as primary sources while others depend mostly on wells or transported water.

The census report indicated that Stung Treng province had the highest rate of dependence on natural bodies of water and waterways at 46.1 per cent of the population. Six other provinces relying on these as primary sources of water were Pursat (28.4 per cent), Kampot (25.3 per cent), Oddar Meanchey (24.8 per cent), Pailin (21.5 per cent), Battambang (20.9 per cent) and Mondulkiri (20.6 per cent).

The provinces most dependent on water transported by tanker lorries were Oddar Meanchey (21.3 per cent) and Kampong Speu (17.8 per cent).

Provinces with the highest use of bottled drinking water were Pailin (30.3 per cent), Kep (26.5 per cent) and Banteay Meanchey (22 per cent).

The five provinces where people were most dependent on pumping or drilling wells were Svay Rieng (83.9 per cent), Prey Veng (70 per cent), Tbong Khmum (51.2 per cent), Siem Reap (39.1 per cent) and Kampong Chhnang (36.5 per cent).

Neam Kopy, an environmental specialist, described Cambodia as a water-rich country but said in order to save enough water to meet the people’s needs, the government should find better ways to store water according to the actual situation of each area.

“In the areas that receive the most rainfall, we need to build additional reservoirs or increase the capacities of existing reservoirs to sustain supply through the dry season. The government should be strategic. Every year, our country has lots of rainfall. The problem is how to keep the water from the rainy season for use in the dry season,” he said.

Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology spokesman Chan Yutha could not be reached for comment on February 17.

Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said work was ongoing to protect natural water resources.

“Maintaining forests and water sources is a necessary task. For example, Phnom Kulen is the main water source for Siem Reap province, and there are as many as 56 water sources which need to be maintained to protect water supplies for the whole province. It is the same with other provinces, which necessarily means maintaining water sources including forests,” he said.

Pheaktra added that paying closer attention to water resources has resulted in the government implementing a pilot programme called “Payment for Ecosystem Service”, a new system of tax liabilities for businesses which consume water as part of their income model.

“So far, we are applying the system on a voluntary basis, and we are using that money to protect water resources and forests in the area,” he said.

The environment ministry has also appealed to the public as well as companies, hotels and guesthouses to conserve water for the sake of the environment.

If water resources are not protected, the country could face shortages and other challenges in the context of climate change, Pheaktra said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom's Covid cluster cases jump to 194

    The Ministry of Health on February 25 confirmed 65 new cases of Covid-19, with 58 linked to the February 20 community transmission. The latest cluster cases include nine Vietnamese nationals, five Cambodians, one each from Korea, Singapore and Japan, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total number

  • Locations shut, dozens more Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health has closed 23 locations in connection with the February 20 community transmission of Covid-19 and summoned for testing anyone who had direct contact with affected people and places. The number of discovered related infections has risen to 76, including 39 women. In a press release,

  • Preah Sihanouk hit with travel ban

    Preah Sihanouk Provincial Administration has announced a temporary travel ban to and from the province, except for ambulances and trucks transporting goods. The announcement came after prime minister Hun Sen called on people in the province to travel only if necessary, and that people not

  • Cambodia's Covid cluster cases rise to 137

    The Ministry of Health on February 24 recorded 40 more cases of Covid-19, with 38 linked to the February 20 community transmission. Of the 40, two are imported cases involving Chinese passengers. The 38 include two Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total cases

  • AstraZeneca jabs touch down in Phnom Penh airport

    The first shipment of 324,000 doses of the AstraZeneca/SII vaccine which was provided through the Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) Facility was delivered to Phnom Penh International Airport on March 2. The rest of the COVAX provided vaccines will arrive in Cambodia at a later date.

  • Covid cluster raises alarm, health bodies urge vigilance

    The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia have expressed great concern over the February 20 cluster transmission of Covid-19 in the community. Both entities appealed for vigilance and cooperation in curbing further spread of the virus. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said