Earlier, the PUPR Minister reported that of approximately 114 lakes, 323 dams, and reservoirs, or around 60 and 80 percent are still effective
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo highlighted the importance of maintaining the water supply for sustaining national food security amid the El Nino phenomenon, which is currently affecting multiple regions, during a meeting with ministries and agencies on Tuesday.

Minister of Environment and Forestry (LHK), Siti Nurbaya Bakar, conveyed this after attending a limited meeting on mitigating the impact of the El Nino phenomenon, which was chaired by President Widodo at Merdeka Palace, Jakarta.

"Essentially, there are three things that the President instructed: first, mapping the problem comprehensively; second, focusing on strategies for water availability; and third, continuously checking the food production center area for water adequacy," she informed.

Also, as part of the meeting agenda, several ministries and agencies submitted the latest report on mitigatory steps for facing the drought, she said adding, they included the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR), which informed that 60 to 80 percent of water supply in Indonesia is currently still safe.

"Earlier, the PUPR Minister reported that of approximately 114 lakes, 323 dams, and reservoirs, or around 60 and 80 percent are still effective. So, they can still be resolved," said Minister Bakar.

During the meeting, the President also directed ministries and relevant agencies to be cautious of the potential for crop failure due to the declining availability of irrigation water.

Another issue that needs to be mitigated, he said, is clean water supply for communities, which must be fulfilled.

Bakar informed that the President also asked ministries and agencies to maintain the availability of rice. He also directed them to anticipate and handle the issue of forest and land fires, including dealing with several existing complaints that need to be addressed, she added.

Additionally, Widodo asked the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) to relay weather forecasts clearly to the public.

"Later on, the President asked the BMKG to relay weather forecasts and future projections," Bakar added.

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Translator: Yoanita Hastryka Djohan
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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