‘Pits not suited to every property’
City News – March 15, 2007

As of this week, the State Ministry for the Environment has been on a mission to promote rainwater harvesting, particularly through the use of percolation pits. The Jakarta Post asked some people what they thought about the issue.

Anggie Rifki, is the internal coordinator of the Indonesian Communication Forum on Drinking Water Quality Management on Jl. Percetakan Negara, Central Jakarta. She lives with her family on Jl. Proklamasi, Central Jakarta:

Percolation pits are not a new thing for us. We have been raising public awareness about the program since 2004. The percolation system has the potential to maintain groundwater supplies in Jakarta, as well as reducing the flood risk.

But we face problems in promoting the program since many households don’t have big enough backyards for a pit. We can’t force them to install them because the pit should be located a certain number of meters away from the septic tank.

Many Jakartans don’t seem to be aware of the poor quality of the groundwater. They have too many other problems to worry about.

We also run a re-greening program. We give seeds to residents who want to plant trees in their yards. That’s also an effective way of harvesting rainwater.

As International Water Day nears, we hope to make more people aware of water issues.

Yessy works in marketing and communications in Pejaten, South Jakarta. She lives in Pasar Minggu, South Jakarta:

There is no percolation pit at my house. We directly channel the rainwater to drainage ditches, as many residents do. There are three ditches encircling my complex, so the area is flood free.

It is unfair of the government to raid housing complexes.

It should educate people first about the program.

In addition, percolation pits are not suited to every property. You can’t build a pit on a small block of land.

–The Jakarta Post