Thursday, October 27, 2011

20111018 MEDIA STATEMENT BY PROF CHAN ENG SOON

20111018 MEDIA STATEMENT BY PROF CHAN ENG SOON
http://bettersingapore.blogspot.com/2011/10/20111018-media-statement-by-prof-chan.html

http://www.news.gov.sg/public/sgpc/en/media_releases/agencies/mewr/press_release/P-20111006-1.html?Au... 18/10/2011

MEDIA STATEMENT BY PROF CHAN ENG SOON, CHAIRMAN,
EXPERT PANEL ON DRAINAGE DESIGN AND FLOOD
PROTECTION MEASURES

The Expert Panel on Drainage Design and Flood Protection Measures convened its second meeting from 26 to 30September 2011.

2 The Panel was briefed on national water agency, PUB’s drainage planning and design process and the operations of Marina Barrage. The Panel was also briefed by the Meteorological Service Singapore on historical rainfall trends. A site visit was also made to the ABC Waters project at Kallang River-Bishan Park. At an earlier session, the expert panel also visit the Marina Barrage, the Stamford and Bukit Timah Catchments.

3 The Panel had a good discussion and arrived at some preliminary findings and recommendations on PUB’s drainage design and flood protection measures. The Panel will further deliberate on these recommendations before submitting a final report to the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources.

4 In essence, the Expert Panel recognises that any drainage system, whatever the standards, has a finite capacity. From time to time, intense rainfall will overwhelm the system, and there will be residual risks that need to be managed. This applies to all cities in the world as it is part of a natural process.

5 The Expert Panel’s preliminary findings are:
a) Much good work has been done by PUB. In terms of storm drainage, Singapore compares well to other metropolitan cities.
b) There is evidence (from Meteorological Service Singapore’s analysis of a study of rainfall intensity) that the maximum rainfall intensities in Singapore have increased in the recent past 30 years (from 1980 to 2010).

c) Based on the evidence provided (from modelling simulations by PUB), Marina Barrage was not the cause of the flood incidents in 2010 and 2011.

d) Measures being undertaken to address the Bukit Timah floods appear to be sound and should alleviate the flooding problem in the area.
[These measures include the widening and deepening of Bukit Timah Canal at the stretch from Jalan Kampong Chantek to Maple Ave, and the upgrading of the Bukit Timah First Diversion Canal from Maple Ave to Clementi Road]

e) Conventional design approach and standards are not sufficient to secure an adequate drainage system for the future. The Panel acknowledges that PUB has recognised this and has proposed an increase in design standards through the revised Code of Practice (COP) on Surface Water Drainage.

6 The Panel also proposes the following preliminary recommendations:

a) PUB should move to a process of new generation drainage systems models that can adequately replicate systems performance, evaluate potential interventions and provide flood-risk mapping.

b) There should be increased monitoring of systems performance (rainfall radar, flow meters, rain gauges and water level sensors) to provide better operational information, help validate models and facilitate early warning.

c) PUB to consider a wider range of measures that mitigates the effects of urbanisation (e.g. compensatory storage for new developments and redevelopments). A wider range of measures may be more appropriate for the management of flood risk in the future.

d) PUB to consider added benefits of drainage in the context of the wider future needs of Singapore (e.g. storm water reuse, improved water quality, biodiversity, amenities)

e) PUB to consider further revisions to the current Code of Practice on Surface Water Drainage based on:-
Systems approach
Use of Risk-based approach, guided by trends in rainfall intensities and potential implications of climate change and standards

• Use of comprehensive modelling and scenario analysis
The Expert Panel will conclude its review and submit a final report in January 2012.

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