King Tides provide a glimpse into how climate change will affect us


Can it be business as usual for us? Why weren’t King Tides a big problem before? What has changed?

What kind of impact will it have on all that land reclamation taking place around us. Already, parts of the coastline of Butterworth have been hit by erosion.

According to the US Department of Ecology:

“Some of the highest tides of the year occur in the winter. These tides, referred to as “King Tides,” occur naturally when the sun and the moon align, causing an increased gravitational pull on the Earth’s oceans. This winter king tides occur November through February…

“King Tides give scientists and citizens a peak into one way climate change will impact our lives. As global temperatures rise, the oceans warm slightly and expand, ice caps and glaciers melt, and more precipitation falls as rain instead of snow. This causes sea levels to rise.

“These rising sea levels are expected to:

  • Intensify flooding in coastal areas, especially during high tides and major storms
  • Shift coastal beaches inland
  • Threaten structures, roads, utilities and other coastal land uses
  • Increase coastal bluff erosion, endangering houses and other structures built near the bluff edges
  • Threaten coastal freshwater and coastal aquifers (underground water supplies)”

More on this soon.

But in the meantime, can we continue to pretend to carry on business as usual? Unfortunately, our corporate media rarely highlight climate change for reasons best known to themselves.

READ MORE:  Penang floods: Stop further hill and tree cutting and over development
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  1. Time for Tranquility to reflect upon what insidious crimes we have inflicted on Nature like botak-ing the hills.
    There’s a new primeval sanctuary called The Habitat @ Penang Hill. Serene, connecting to Nature & healing to the guilty minds & wearied bodies. And maybe change our hearts to love Nature the more.
    Nevermind the Speedy Gonzales Fridge Train which replaces the old world charm of a ‘cool’ ride + time-stood-still ambience up Penang Hill. Nevermind there are no more dinosaurs to encounter.

    The Habitat: Nature’s new home on Penang Hill
    Note: the headline would be more appropriate as: The Habitat: Nature’s Untouched Sanctuary on Penang Hill

  2. I think the rich in Penang prefer to live high up the hill (premium price housing) for better air and no fear of flooding?

  3. How about a trillion-RM project to protect the entire coast with a dyke? We can contract a China co. and everyone can live happily ever after on the bribe.

  4. Anil, there is a saying “the tide flows and ebb” and that’s exactly what it is, nothing sinister. Climate change is just like the tide and Mother Earth will be able to cope as long as the Sun shines & mankind is climate common sense!

  5. blind cant see and … cant think. developers have been smart planning for the day and days after. why flee when developers are building highrise and higher into the pg hills.

  6. Haiya, that appears all over the region now lah!
    Whoa, that Mike Toh can call upon the King tide? Splendid!

  7. Kng tides is happening in many olaces in Malaysia, even in places without reclamation and development like Kuala Kedah. So please do not imply that reclamation is causing the trouble.

    • I didnt imply that. I was trying to say, what’s going to happen to all that reclamation when sea levels rise? Have they properly thought through it?

      • If only more people like me and Peter etc have no issue living and shopping in mainland Penang,then there is no need for land reclamation. So wiser to promote living off the island lah.

      • Carbon emission leads to green house effect resulting in hotter earth, melting of icebergs thus rising sea level. But many still prefer to drive to exacerbate the problem. Check your carbon footprint, be a solution.

      • May be Anil can verify those who attended the Gurney Drive kopitiam talk, how many come driving or carpooling to save the environment?

    • Reclamation to a certain degree can influence the direction & velocity of king tides.
      The case in point is the Tg Tokong reclamation which protrudes into the sea causing tide direction to change & also increases in height of waves which most likely hit the beaches from Gurney 1 till Esplanade.

      • The bigger problem is when somebody from Melaka decided to ‘annex’ the Straits Quay to Gurney Drive No-More for a more Cosmopolitan Look to overwhelm others’ frenzied [email protected] pre-308.
        So, no point to pin-point on the 1st culprit when there’s already a 2nd one willing at all costs to follow suit in the same irresponsibility + class 1 arrogance.

      • gilakan bn gomen starts everywhere. port kelang melaka pd and johor in massive way even singland complains.
        how can reclaimed land in open seas has impact? but hk victoria habour narrows hk island and kowloon it has impact as island is already close to mainland

      • Go see Melaka Harbour City and Johor Forest City massive reclamation that BN has sanctioned.

  8. The madness to enrich oneself has taken priority
    over a sense of keeping the environment in balance-

    Look at the mammoth project so called to develop
    the country-
    Forest City – johor :wiped out the ecology of 7 malay villages

    Malacco land reclamation- Fisherman left with a few frys after pulling their net

    Kelantan deforestation- an exercise in denial. nature will unleash a feedback
    at the next monsoon season.Houses will be demolished and flood all over

    Deleting bukit Besi, Ganu -Next monsoon will unleash unabated flooding in KT

    Pahang widespread deforestation- will cause widespread flooding and make the
    river no lomnger navigable at the next monsoon

    Mat desicion makers must realise you reap what you had sowed. there is no
    short cut tyo instant wealth.

    Sarawak deforestation will result less fish in the river and make the Rejang not
    navigable anymore in the coming mossoon

    nature punishes man for its stupid acts. the rural population will suffer
    in the coming monsoon!

    • you use cars, buses or train? why silence on use of handphones where telco are built on bldg and hill tops? dont use elect as they are generated by burning fossils or dams.. transmisions by towers on hill tops.

      • That is why your friend has told us repeatedly that he will retreat to forest to be belum lang, and possibly forgo all modern amenities and gadgets, except the 4WD?

      • pasar mlm traders and snake oil peddlers are getting more. including scam emails and phone calls. they are worst than politicians as they can buy cheap and sell high. macc would go after them. politicians cannot buy cheap as gilakan bn a gee not happy as macc to dig further.

  9. After the next 3 decades (I may not be alive by then to witness), will George Town be the Venice of the East?

    Already, the accelerating rate of snow cap melting in North Antarctica or reduced winter snowfall is preceding (already happening) what scientists have forecast by many years.
    We are living in dangerous time – one day it’s sunshine & fine, then another day, king of storms & tidal waves!
    Imagine a higher sea level coupled with strong coastal winds (50 – 100km) during a tropical storm.
    This is a weather combo no one would want to stand up to cheer or fly drones!

    Unless we can raise Penang Island by another 100ft above sea level, the ‘khua-hai’ (look sea) residents better be prepared for an emergency take off (buy a king size drone to quick-lift an entire family of 5). Cars won’t leave your threatened homes as fast as there will be massive traffic jams on all roads leaving the city towards the hills.
    Yes, the hills. The only place of sanctuary from the monstrous destructive forces of marine storms & tidal waves.

    That’s why I choose Belum rainforest.
    Or Taiping (19 metres above sea level), if I need to relocate my family (if they are willing).

    Kaching, kaching! Property insurance agents will most probably rub their palms with glee should the premiums for coastal ‘khua-hai’ high end properties be raised as high as the king of tides!

    • If yr family of 5 has decided to move to Tailing, its now or never to protect the millennium tress by the lake. Also no problem finding or discovering fellow street food ori-maestros migrants from Penang who speak hokkien with same slang as islanders.

      • i have been telling stay in tree tops pg can be expect in building tree top houses. they can protect the trees..they prune the trees. they can get to the food easily like ang hei lui lan.


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