Anjir System: An Atlantis Legacy Canal System for Flood Regulation in Flat Areas

A research by Dhani Irwanto

When the Dutch first visited the flat areas in Central Kalimantan, they were amazed by the canal system that already existed in the area. Unlike the Dutch system, namely the Polder System, the Anjir System in Central and South Kalimantan is unique. This system consists of channels, namely:

  1. River – Natural channel, flowing from upstream to downstream
  2. Traverse canal – Known as Anjir/Antasan, which is a canal that connects two points on the adjacent rivers at the same elevation. The flow is bidirectional depending on which river discharge is greater.
  3. Secondary canal – Known as Handil/Tatah, which is a channel connected to the traverse canal, sometimes connecting the two. The flow is bidirectional.
  4. Tertiary canal – Known as Saka, which is a canal that connects the land to the secondary canal. The flow is bidirectional.

The rivers, traverse canals and secondary canals are also used for transportation. The tertiary canals are also used as irrigation channels where when the water is high the water flows into the land and when the water is low it is used to remove toxins from the land.

This canal system is in accordance with what Plato wrote about the canal system contained in the Atlantis Plain (in Critias 118c, 118d, 118e):

  1. Traverse canal – Anjir/Antasan
  2. Inland canal (secondary canal) – Handil/Tatah
  3. Irrigation canal (tertiary canal) – Saka

When there is a flood from one of the rivers, or during high tide, the water spreads into this canal system so that inundation of the land by flooding or high tide can be overcome.

This canal system looks different when compared to the canal system in Jakarta, which was designed by the Dutch as the Polder System. Jakarta does not have a system consisting of canals like the Anjir System. The West and the East Flood Canals are not traverse canals because they flow only in one direction.

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