Dr. Ir. Agus Maryono was awarded as the best writer 2009 of national public works article in the 64th anniversary of Ministry of Public Works. The award presentation was done by Minister of Public Works, Ir. Djoko Kirmanto, Thursday (3/12). Agusâ€™ article entitled â€œSeries of Floods and Upstream Watershed Conservationâ€ which was published in Media Indonesia daily 19 January 2009 was assessed as the best national article by judges.
In that article, Agus mentioned that the recent floods that hit many areas were generally controlled by many downstream construction efforts. Those cost much money and produced no significant results. That happened because the real problem in the damaged upstream area is left untouched.
To reporters at Fortkagama Room, Monday (7/12), Agus Maryono said that the floods that often happen everywhere would lead theÂ government and other institutions to manage upstream areas more intensively, seriously and comprehensively. â€œWe concentrate in managing downstream flooding while conservation of watershed is very weak because of land use changes. It is time to move the concentration,â€ said this flood researcher from Civil Engineering Faculty, UGM.
According to Agus, flood control can be done through upstream management consisting of reforestation or forest conservation, management and conservation of agricultural and plantation areas, and conservation of rivers, lakes and ponds. Another important thing is the management and conservation of watershed in rural areas. â€œDisposing water downstream is wrong because it causes lack of water in the dry season. The concept is holding upstream water. It will be up to policy makers and Ministries who will involve society,â€ he explained.
He predicted that floods throughout Indonesia will still continue in the next 5-10 years because they are initiated by earthquakes, which can initiate cliff erosion and finally big flooding. Agus urged the society to be aware of earthquakes and landslides.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â
â€œWe have just experienced earthquakes everywhere, earthquakes followed by flood, flash flood and mud flood. The vulnerable area is the cliff area as landslides can potentially happen after earthquakes.â€ he said.
Agus pointed out some incidents of flooding such as that in Bahorok (West Sumatera) in 2003, South Aceh in 2005, in Jember, East Java in 2006, Sinjai, South Sulawesi in 2006 and Bengawan Solo in 2007.