Sarawak to build 3 cascading dams in Kapit, Baram and Belaga after locals consent

Abang Johari speaks during the press conference while Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan (right) looks on at PBB headquarters on Jan 14, 2024.

KUCHING, Jan 15: Sarawak will build three cascading dams at Sungai Gaat in Kapit, Sungai Tutoh in Baram and in Belaga after receiving support from local communities.

Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said he had received letters of consent from the local communities in the three areas.

“We have amended our law where the generation of power can be carried out by the private sector but the distribution will be done by Sarawak Energy Berhad (Sarawak Energy),” he said during a press conference at Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) headquarters here yesterday (Jan 14).

The construction of cascading dams is one of the Sarawak government’s new strategies to generate electricity without having to inundate large areas of land.

Apart from the power generation capability, cascading dams will help to prevent crocodile breeding and preserve the river’s biodiversity.

On Nov 21, 2023, the Sarawak Legislative Assembly (DUN) passed the Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2023 which sought to enable the public and investors to participate in the production of electricity through solar panels and cascading dams in Sarawak.

Among others, the Bill would update the Electricity Ordinance to institutionalise the Single Buyer concept, with Sarawak Energy as the single buyer, where it is allowed to buy power generated by other producers and deliver power through its transmissions and distribution grid to customers. — DayakDaily