Over-exploitation Makes Jakarta Groundwater Contaminated by E. Coli from Septic Tanks

Translator

Ririe Ranggasari

Editor

Laila Afifa

15 November 2022 16:47 WIB

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - PAM JAYA president director Arief Nasrudin said that the cause of drinking water in Jakarta being contaminated with E. coli (Escherichia coli) bacteria, which comes from feces, is excessive groundwater exploitation. This causes the soil layer to become thin, making it easy to corrode, allowing the groundwater to be contaminated by human waste in the septic tank.

"As of now, every household commonly has a septic tank close to the water well. As there is nothing separating the tanks from the wells, the water is easily contaminated," Arief told reporters when met after the 'Discussion on Realizing Water Sovereignty' at the Grand Cempaka Hotel, Monday, November 14.

He did not deny that most of the groundwater in Jakarta has been polluted by E-coli bacteria. In fact, the level of contamination has exceeded the normal limits.

"The contamination cannot be completely eliminated, but the current level is not normal," he said.

Level of E. coli contamination in Jakarta is quite high

According to Arief, the amount of E-coli bacteria in Jakarta are quite large and high, especially in coastal areas. Arief said he could not confirm when the water in Jakarta began to be contaminated with E-coli bacteria. But the important thing is, he said, for people to be more careful in consuming water.

"Make sure that the water is thoroughly cooked so that the bacteria really dies," said Arief.

A study by UNICEF in February 2022 revealed that nearly 70 percent of the 20,000 household drinking water sources tested in Indonesia were contaminated with fecal waste, which contributes to the spread of diarrhea.

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