Clean Drinking Water for the Orang Asli in Malaysia

As a result of littering, overfertilisation and environmental influences, the raw water sources in the Cameron Highlands are contaminated with virus and bacteria. Consumption of such water leads to major health-affecting diseases – and as a chain reaction to less productivity, less income and less education for children. Remote villages of orang asli (aborigines) are concerned of this problem. The orang asli live in the jungle of Malaysia and have no access to drinking water supply. Malaysia’s government developed the Malaysian transformation program to provide drinking water to the inhabitants of remote villages.

The Malaysian transformation program

The program, defined by the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development, has started in 2010. The project targets a successful implementation of decentralised clean technology, which works under harsh conditions and provides a long-term and sustainable solution. In order to incorporate all involved stakeholders, the programme consists of several steps beginning with site-inspections and requirement check, equipment procurement, house and fence building, equipment installation, technical training and education on health issues. Every step is conducted by a professional team of experienced project managers, scientists and local representatives.

It was during the project managements data collection and technology investigation when they first learnt about Trunz Water Systems. Trunz supplies sustainable, eco-powered water treatment systems that are specialised for decentralised application. Together with representatives of Trunz Water Systems a second field visit was executed and a final technical layout for the water treatment equipment was agreed.

Health condictions of the orang asli improved thanks the project. As a ‘pilot-project’ a community water-and-pumping station was built in 22 villages. Each of these stations provides up to 15,000l a day of free drinking water for all local inhabitants (around 250l per person). Thanks to this decentralised water supply solution, the people living in the villages of Cameron Highlinds not only profit from clean drinking water, which is tasteful and free of odour. The most important point remains the positive impact
on their health condition.

In order to maintain the equipment, local people have been trained and are now responsible operators for weekly checks. Three-monthly service, however, remains in the responsibility of a partner company who fulfils a service contract for the complete project. The people in the remote villages have now a tailor-made solution for sustainable infrastructure which leads to an improvement in the quality of life.

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