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Pegalan River at Kampung Berginda, Keningau

River Engineering

Floods have potential to cause enormous damage resulting in economic loss and social disruption. DID carries out river conservancy and flood mitigation works yearly, to reduce the social and economic impacts of floods.

High demands for water, particularly for irrigation, domestic and industrial usage are threatening the ability of the river system to meet all water needs as well as provision for the environmental health and quality of the river. Extraction of river sand and gravel has the potential for serious impact on the stability of a river system. The level of demand for sand and gravel is related directly to the level of development activity and regional population growth. Extraction controls are necessary to prevent damage to river bed and banks.

Riparian reserves, with its vegetation is particularly important to the overall health of the river. A well vegetated riparian is essential for preventing erosion, maintaining habitat, protecting water quality, and for aesthetic and recreation values.

River Protection at Papar River

Many agricultural developments can produce effluents of various kinds which can damage the environment if not properly managed. Turbidity, nutrient runoff and pesticides are some of the water quality issues to be considered during development.

Salinity is becoming a major threat to natural environment. Extensive clearing of land for agriculture or for timber extraction contributed to this effect due to reduction in baseflow during the dry season whereas during the rainy season it causes flash floods.

Urban development will require care in development of waste water treatment and disposal systems, as disposal of only partially treated waste water to rivers or water bodies is unlikely to be tolerated in the future.

There are over 20 major river systems in Sabah. Under the 8th Malaysian Plan, DID will implement flood mitigation works as well as floodplain management plans. The floodplain management plans will identify flood-prone areas provide options for structural and non-structural measures to be taken.

DID also works with other government agencies in ensuring that land development activities are carried out in harmony with the river and estuary environments so as to balance resource utilisation and conservation.

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