Try Not To Collect Too Much Rainwater, Cause There’s A Tax For That Too


Waterborne Fees Levied On Rainwater

Don’t rub your eyes, because there’s nothing wrong with the title of the article.

You might think that rainwater can be collected and used at your every whim and fancy, but the Public Housing Board (PUB) is here to quash that belief.

That’s right, *whispers* the PUB actually levies waterborne fees on rainwater.


Facebook Post

Given the coming water price hike, some people like these aunties in Yishun may be tempted to collect rainwater for daily use.

Facebook user Zhong Brendan posted this screenshot on March 11 that will surely raise eyebrows.


Mr Zhong sent a text to the PUB hotline, asking about the collection and usage of rainwater, and the head-scratching reply took him by surprise.

To summarize the response:

  1. PUB does allow the collection and usage of non-potable rainwater.
  1. However, if collection of rainwater exceeds 20m³ and is discharged into sewers, a waterborne fee will be levied.
  1. Because this water will need to be treated and disposed of.

Where Is The Logic?

First and foremost, the waterborne fee is levied to offset the costs of treating used water, and for the maintenance and operations of the water network.

So it seems that PUB will levy waterborne fees when we discharge too much rainwater into sewers.

At first glance, it makes absolutely zero sense, especially if you consider the fact that rainwater will enter the sewers without human intervention in the first place.


Don’t Panic

Upon closer inspection, however, the tax is unlikely to affect the common folk. A waterborne fee will only be levied if collection of water exceeds 20m³, which translates to 20,000 litres of water.

The current per capita domestic water consumption in Singapore is at 151 litres a day, a far cry from the amount needed to incur a tax from the PUB.

Logically speaking, no household will be able to reach that amount and there’s nothing for us to worry about.

Fears Unfounded

Looks like our fears were unfounded after all, as in reality no household will even be able to nor want to collect that much rainwater.

Perhaps this is targeted at factories who engage in large scale manufacturing instead.

For tips on how to save water, including by the collecting of rainwater, read our story on how one woman pays just $3 per month for water.

Featured Image from forcechange




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