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Question #1: Can you provide an overview of the impact of climate change in Malaysia in recent years and the specific challenges it has posed in terms of flooding?

Climate change is exacerbating flooding in Malaysia. The average temperature in Malaysia has increased by about 2 degrees Celsius over the past 50 years, causing more intense rainfall events. In addition, rising sea levels are making coastal areas more vulnerable to flooding. In recent years, Malaysia has experienced a number of severe floods, including the floods of 2021, which were the worst in the country’s history. These floods caused billions of dollars in damage and displaced hundreds of thousands of people. Flooding poses a number of challenges for the country, including loss of life and property, damage to infrastructure, disruption to economic activity, and increased risk of disease. Malaysia is already a flood-prone country due to its high rainfall and low-lying coastal areas. However, climate change is making the problem worse.

In light of Malaysia’s climate challenges, building and infrastructure professionals should take steps to better prepare for and mitigate the impacts of flooding. This includes designing and building flood-resilient buildings and infrastructure, and installing flood protection measures.

Wavin’s message regarding the urgent need to (re)act to climate change and build liveable cities is that climate change is a serious threat to Malaysia and other countries around the world. It is important to take action now to mitigate the impacts of climate change and to build cities that are more resilient to climate change.

Question #2: What measures have the Malaysian government implemented to mitigate flooding, and how effective have these measures been so far? 

The Malaysian government has introduced a number of financial investments to mitigate the impacts of flooding, including:

  • Reissuing tenders for six flood mitigation projects that had been announced in an earlier iteration of the country’s 2023 budget. This is expected to save the country RM2 billion (US$450 million) and accelerate the completion of these projects.
  • Allocating RM150 million (US$33.62 million) to the National Disaster Management Agency and RM50 million (US$11.16 million) to the armed forces, firefighters and paramilitary civil volunteer corps RELA to improve flood preparation efforts.
  • Establishing a RM10 million ringgit (US$2.23 million) national disaster relief fund and RM20 million (US$4.47 million) grant for local community associations in efforts to face natural disasters.
  • Providing a RM2 billion (US$450 million) financing facility from the central bank Bank Negara Malaysia to support sustainable technology start-ups and help small and medium enterprises implement low-carbon practices.
  • Increasing the allocation of funds for the Ecological Fiscal Transfer for Biodiversity Conservation initiative to state governments.
  • Allocating RM150 million ringgit (USD33.62 million) to spur the development of environmentally-friendly projects, including supporting the carbon market and reforestation efforts.

The Malaysian government’s revised budget for 2023 is the largest ever, at RM386.14 billion (US$86.23 billion), up almost 4 per cent from the original RM372.3 billion (US$83.13 billion) budget proposed for this year. This increase is largely due to the government’s increased focus on flood mitigation and sustainable development. However, these measures are not enough to completely eliminate the risk of flooding. It is important for individuals and communities to also take steps to protect themselves from flooding. For example, people can build flood barriers around their homes and businesses, and they can have flood insurance to cover losses in the event of a flood.

Question #3: In the context of the building and construction industry, how can proactive identification of solutions contribute to the resilience of building infrastructure in Malaysia against flooding; as in Indonesia, we see the same challenges with flooding and taking water from the ground?

By conducting risk assessments and identifying areas where buildings and infrastructure are at risk of flooding, preventive steps can be taken to mitigate these risks. For example, existing buildings can be retrofitted with improved drainage systems, or new buildings can be constructed using flood-resistant materials and construction techniques.

Proactive identification of solutions can also drive the development and implementation of new technologies and practices to make buildings and infrastructure more resilient to flooding. For example, new building materials and construction techniques can be developed to withstand the forces of floodwaters and to minimize the damage caused by flooding.

It can also help to raise awareness of the importance of flood resilience and encourage the adoption of flood-resilient practices in the building and construction industry, through education and training programs, as well as through public awareness campaigns.

In addition, innovative drainage designs, such as permeable pavements, green roofs, and rain gardens, can also be used to make Malaysia’s building infrastructure more flood-resistant. Retrofitting existing buildings with improved drainage systems can also mitigate flood risks. High-quality drainage pipes and fittings are essential components of effective stormwater management. Conducting regular assessments of existing infrastructure to identify vulnerabilities and prioritize upgrades is also crucial. This proactive approach allows for targeted investments in retrofitting and strengthening buildings and critical infrastructure.

Question #4: Could you share some examples of successful projects that Wavin has undertaken in Malaysia, particularly those involving efficient and sustainable solutions like QuickStream?

While Wavin has not yet had the opportunity to implement QuickStream in Malaysia, we are confident that it can offer significant benefits to the country’s building and construction industry. It has been successfully deployed in a variety of commercial, industrial, sports, educational, healthcare, and residential buildings worldwide, demonstrating its ability to address a wide range of challenges. Here are some examples of Wavin QuickStream’s successful global projects:

  1. Commercial buildings: Amancay Hotel in Mexico, Marko supermarket in Belgium and Poland, Schiphol Amsterdam airport in the Netherlands, Diyarbakir Airport in Turkey, El Dorado airport in Colombia, and Court house in Belgium
  2. Industrial facilities: BMW facilities in Dadong, China, and Germany, Porsche Motorenwerk in Germany, Acesco factory in Colombia, Amazon facilities in Poland, Ikea distributor center in Germany, and Ikea stores in Germany, Belgium, and Italy
  3. Sports stadiums and arenas: Guangzhou International Sports Arena in China and Waldstadium in Frankfurt, Germany
  4. Educational institutions: Universities and schools in various countries
  5. Healthcare facilities: Martini Hospital in the Netherlands
  6. Residential buildings: Lakeside Century Residential development in China

Wavin is committed to working with its Malaysian partners to explore opportunities to implement QuickStream in the country. We believe that this innovative solution can play a significant role in making Malaysian buildings more resilient and sustainable in the face of climate change.

Question #5: What are the key features of Wavin QuickStream, and how does it contribute to flood prevention and the mitigation of water damage on buildings?

Wavin QuickStream is a groundbreaking siphonic roof drainage system that revolutionizes flood prevention and protects buildings from water damage. It can be customized and seamlessly integrated into any architectural design, ensuring efficient rainwater management for a variety of applications, including commercial buildings, industrial facilities, airports, stadiums, and other large roofs. The QuickStream solution help prevents mitigate water damage in the following ways:

  • High-efficiency rainwater removal: Wavin QuickStream utilizes siphonic technology to efficiently remove rainwater from rooftops, unlike traditional gravity drainage systems that rely on slopes and gravity. Siphonic systems create a vacuum effect that rapidly draws water into the drainage pipes, minimizing the time rainwater spends on the roof and reducing the risk of flooding.
  • Mitigation of water damage and flood prevention: By swiftly and effectively removing rainwater from roofs, Wavin QuickStream mitigates the risk of water damage to buildings. Standing water on rooftops can lead to leaks, structural damage, and even collapse in extreme cases. Wavin QuickStream’s rapid drainage ensures that roofs remain free from excessive water weight, reducing the potential for costly water-related damage due to rooftop flooding. This is especially important for businesses and critical infrastructure that cannot afford downtime due to flooding.
  • Seamless integration: Wavin QuickStream integrates seamlessly with other Wavin’s comprehensive stormwater management solutions, such as Wavin Aquacell, providing a holistic approach to flood prevention. This ensures that water is efficiently managed from rooftops to the ground, reducing the burden on stormwater drainage systems and preventing overflows.
  • Reduced roof load and space optimization: The compact design of QuickStream requires smaller-diameter pipes, reducing the weight and structural load on the building’s roof. This is especially important for buildings with limited load-bearing capacity. It allows architects and builders more flexibility in roof design while maintaining structural integrity. Additionally, the smaller pipe diameter means that less space is required for drainage infrastructure, opening up valuable space for other uses, such as HVAC equipment, solar panels, or green roof installations. Architects and developers can thus optimize space utilization in building designs.

Question #6: How can builders and developers in Malaysia integrate Wavin’s innovative solutions into their projects to enhance flood resilience and reduce water damage risks?

Wavin’s solutions can be used to collect and store stormwater from roofs and other surfaces, which can help to reduce the amount of stormwater that enters the drainage system and prevent flooding. 

For example, Wavin QuickStream can be used to collect and store stormwater from roofs and other surfaces. In Malaysia’s dynamic climate landscape, flood resilience is a top priority for builders and developers. Wavin’s innovative solutions, including QuickStream and Aquacell, can help to fortify projects against water-related challenges and elevate their sustainability.

Question #7: In light of Malaysia’s climate challenges, what advice would you give to building and infrastructure professionals to better prepare for and mitigate the impacts of flooding?

Invest in cutting-edge stormwater management technologies that can effectively collect, transport, and store excess rainwater can help to reduce runoff during periods of severe rain. Modern methods such as siphonic roof drainage systems and underground storage tanks can be particularly effective.

Establish regular maintenance and inspection routines for drainage systems, flood barriers, and other flood-mitigation infrastructure can help to prevent system failures during critical moments. Proactive maintenance is essential for ensuring that these systems are functioning properly when they are needed most.

Promote the use of green infrastructure elements such as urban parks, green spaces, and vegetated swales can help to absorb excess water and reduce flooding while enhancing the overall urban environment. These features can play a significant role in making our communities more resilient to climate change.

Question #8: Can you elaborate on Wavin’s message regarding the urgent need to (re)act to climate change and build liveable cities

Wavin’s message is clear; climate change is happening, and we must build liveable cities that are ready to face it. We are committed to helping build healthy and sustainable environments, and believe that this requires taking action now to mitigate the impacts of climate change and build cities that are more resilient.

As a crucial component of climate change adaptation, Wavin is advancing sustainable water management methods. This includes effective wastewater treatment, stormwater management, and rainwater harvesting techniques that can lighten the load on urban drainage systems and reduce the risk of flooding. Wavin’s cutting-edge products and services can help to make urban infrastructure more resilient and cities better prepared to handle harsh weather conditions

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