The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (MEMR) of the Republic of Indonesia has issued a regulation in the form of Ministerial Decree No. 291.K/GL.01/2023 concerning the Standards for Groundwater Utilization Approval.
In this regulation, it is mentioned that households requiring approval are those with groundwater usage exceeding 100 cubic meters per month. Meanwhile, households with usage below 100 cubic meters do not need approval.
Acting Head of the Geological Agency of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM), Muhammad Wafid, stated that the regulation on groundwater utilization was previously enacted through the Law No. 7 of 2004 concerning Water Resources.
This regulation is implemented to address the adverse effects of excessive groundwater exploitation which can lead to a decrease in groundwater reserves and other environmental impacts such as land subsidence and seawater intrusion.
Several regions in Indonesia have experienced serious water damage, particularly in major cities in Java. In order to address these issues, conservation efforts and sustainable groundwater resource management, as well as the development of alternative sources of clean water, are necessary.
Why should we regulate water usage?
Wafid emphasized that Ministerial Decree No. 291.K/GL.01/2023 was not issued to limit groundwater utilization for the public.
"In essence, it is not about limiting usage for the public, but about managing the groundwater basin, especially the aquifer present there, to the best of our ability so that everyone can use it, and everyone can be served," said Wafid in the Ministry of ESDM's press release.
He urged the public to understand that, although groundwater is a renewable natural resources, its recovery takes a long time and requires conservation in case of disruptions.
"The degradation of groundwater conditions and the environment due to human activities can be stopped with positive human intervention, one of which is trough technical engineering to mitigate the impacts of groundwater extraction, aiming to restore the conditions and environment of groundwater," he added.
Many experts highlighted the importance of regulating groundwater utilization in order to prevent land subsidence and ensure water availability in recent years.
Raising awareness of water resources management
In addition to effective implementation, the regulation of groundwater utilization must also be supported by the public. Conservation efforts for water cannot be fully achieved without the awareness of society.
In this regard, the effective implementation, the regulation of groundwater utilization must also be supported by the public. Conservation efforts for water cannot be fully achieved without the awareness of society.
In this regard, the Minister of Public Works and Public Housing (MPWH), Basuki Hadimuljono, revealed that the 10th World Water forum to be held in May 2024 aims to raise awareness of water resources.
According to him, issues related to water resources are not only national but also global issues. The 10th World Water Forum will open discussions among various stakeholders, including young people, covering thematic, political, and regional topics.
"Our interest is to create awareness for all levels of water management, from central to regional and local," said Minister Basuki during the Water Art Installation exhibition, as reported by Antara on Sunday (3/12/2023).
The 10th World Water Forum in Bali on May 18-24, 2024, will serve as a momentum to enhance global cooperation for water resources management. Water is a critical issue considering the challenges of clean water scarcity and climate impacts on water resources sustainability.