No Covid-19 virus found in Klang Valley sewerage systems


THE sewerage systems in the Klang Valley are safe for the public, says the Ministry of Environment and Water (KASA). 

This assurance comes after the ministry conducted a study on the presence of the COVID-19 virus in the sewerage systems around Klang Valley through a research project with the National Water Research Institute of Malaysia (NAHRIM), Indah Water Consortium (IWC) and the National Water Services Commission (SPAN).

The study was conducted in collaboration with the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) AND Delft University of Technology (TUD), the Netherlands. 

KASA said that the study was conducted starting April 2020 with the objective of looking at the presence of Covid-19 virus RNA fragments in sewerage waste as an indicator of epidemic detection in a community.

“In general, the results of the study showed that no positive signal was detected from the wastewater samples that had been completely treated. This shows that the existing treatment system at the sewerage treatment plant is effective and does not pollute water resources in Malaysia,” the ministry said.

KASA added that cell culture tests by the National Public Health Laboratory, Sungai Buloh confirmed that the virus is not able to infect humans through sewage, as well as genome sequencing was also performed to look at the distribution of variants present in the community such as beta and delta variants.

KASA also welcomed cooperation with all parties in the conduct of any studies related to the COVID-19 virus in sewer systems.