The construction of a giant sea wall aims to safeguard the Northern Coast of Java from the looming threat of sinking. Despite its noble intentions, this ambitious endeavor has yet to secure recognition as a national strategic project (PSN).
This confirmation was conveyed by the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs (Kemenko Perekonomian). Wahyu Utomo, the Deputy of Regional Development and Spatial Planning at the ministry, and also the Chairman of the Implementation Committee for Priority Infrastructure Development (KPPIP), shed light on the matter. He emphasized that there hasn’t been a thorough assessment regarding the inclusion of the giant sea wall project in the PSN.
“The giant sea wall has not been designated as a PSN project yet; further comprehensive studies are required. It’s distinct from coastal embankments, which are confined to the beach area,” Wahyu articulated during an interview at the ministry’s office in Jakarta on Wednesday (7/2/2024).
Wahyu further elaborated on the recent phenomenon of land subsidence, which has garnered significant attention from the government. Referring to data from Bappenas, he noted that land subsidence across the entire Northern Coast region has amounted to 200 meters over a decade.
However, Wahyu indicated that, at present, the government has not prioritized the giant sea wall project as a solution to the land subsidence issue in Indonesia.
“Indonesia’s approach focuses on mitigation, aiming to reduce groundwater usage to mitigate rapid land subsidence. Achieving this would be highly beneficial as it would alleviate the need for extensive financial investments,” he elucidated.
Nevertheless, Wahyu expressed openness to the possibility of the government prioritizing the construction of giant sea walls in the Northern Coast region if the issue of land subsidence persists.
This proactive stance is crucial to safeguard various national assets, including major roads and industrial zones scattered throughout the Northern Coast region.
“In the event of extreme circumstances, we must be prepared to implement drastic measures, hence our readiness to employ a sea wall approach,” Wahyu concluded, emphasizing the importance of proactive measures in addressing potential environmental challenges.