The government has promised to fine people who damage or misuse public drainage systems.
Penalties will be levelled at the owners of houses, businesses, residential buildings and satellite cities which connect their drainage systems to the public system without proper authorisation.
Businesses that fail to set up water treatment systems and individuals who throw garbage into the drainage system will also be punished.
The new penalties are detailed in a government sub-decree that was issued on December 25 to improve drainage and wastewater management.
The decree aims to ensure public health as well as conservation of biodiversity.
The sub-decree said residential housing owners connecting their drainage systems to the public one without permission will receive a written warning, then a fine up to 100,000 riel (about $25). Should they continue, the fine will rise to about $50.
Businesses, satellite cities, resorts and recreation centres could be fined up to 10 million riel (about $2,500) for the same offence.
“Individuals who cause damage to the drainage system or the equipment of wastewater treatment stations will receive sanctions including warnings, a fine of up to 10 million riel, and fines to repair the damaged equipment,” the sub-decree said.
The fines and warnings also extend to individuals who throw garbage, solid waste, fuel waste or chemical substances into drainage systems. Fines for these offences could be up to $1,250.
Heng Nareth, spokesman for the Ministry of Environment, said yesterday that the sub-decree aims to assist local officials in the management and maintenance of drainage and wastewater systems.
“In the past, those who built a house would connect their sewage system into the public system without asking permission. It made the drainage system not work properly because they didn’t have the technical means to do the connection properly,” Mr Nareth said.