Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia needs to maximize and optimize water resources through the construction of dams, reservoirs, and irrigation facilities to mitigate drought caused by climate change, an official said here on Monday.

Drought is a real impact of climate change, said Dwikorita Karnawati, head of the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG).

"The impact of drought will also cause a water crisis both in developed and developing countries," she said during the Merdeka Barat 9 Forum on water preservation.

The water crisis, which will also affect the food crisis, is estimated to occur around the year 2050. It will affect Africa particularly, even Europe and Asia, she said.

"This is a global phenomenon, but it will have local impacts," Karnawati added.

Thus, building national climate resilience has become important for facing the impacts of climate change since Indonesia cannot rely on other countries, which are experiencing a similar phenomenon, she said.

Developing dams, reservoirs, and irrigation facilities is vital for national climate resilience since it will affect food security, she explained.

The Public Works and Public Housing Ministry is continuing to carry out the construction of large-scale water storage infrastructures to anticipate the threat of drought caused by climate change.

The ministry's spokesperson Endra Atmawidjaja said that the government started to initiate dam construction in 2014.

The number of dams planned has now reached 61, and they are located in several regions of Indonesia.

Of the 61 dams, 36 have been completed, while the remaining 25 are under construction.

The construction of the dams is intended to improve water storage capacity and check floods during the rainy season and drought during the dry season.

"We make it so that the water from the two seasons can meet the people's demand and avoid the impacts of disaster," he explained.

"This is important for food so that, within one year of planting, we can utilize the increasingly limited land for high productivity," he added.

Dam infrastructure will also allow Indonesia to not be dependent on other countries since it will guarantee development sustainability in terms of food security.

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Translator: Sugiharto P, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Anton Santoso
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