We could soon lose this breathtaking coastline, rich in plankton, and its waters, an area teeming with prawns and fish – thanks to the greed of certain quarters.
Feel the crisp sea breeze caressing your skin as you feast your eyes on the serene tranquil waters. Taste the salt in the air. Listen to the silence of the forest as you hike along the coastline amidst the whispers of rustling leaves. Watch the weary fishermen hauling in their catch. Savour the scent of grilled fish and mee udang (prawn noodles) wafting in the air from little restaurants dotted along the southern coastline.
This is what we stand to lose – and a lot more.
I gave a talk about this massive reclamation to a small group of people a couple of days ago. It surprised me that several of them were not aware of the 4,500 three-island project in the south.
At the end of the talk, several among the audience came up to ask, “What can we do to stop this?”
People should do all they can to highlight and raise awareness of this project.
Those pushing for this project are counting on public ignorance of the enormous implications of this project, not least the loss of a precious source of fish supply.
They are not telling the public that the Penang population is not growing rapidly any longer, only inching up – making massive reclamation unnecessary. Each couple in Penang now produces only 1.4 children on average – well below the population replacement rate of 2.1 children.
But most people are unaware that the project proponents expect some 446,000 people to live on those three islands. Where are these people coming from?
Who are the buyers that will buy those expensive “sea-view” condos and luxury waterfront houses on those three islands, designed to maximise the number of sea-view properties for sale? Only 20% of the homes will be “affordable” (to whom?) – which means 80% will be “unaffordable”.
Most people don’t know that Penang state is larger than Singapore. (Why, even Seberang Perai has a larger land mass than Singapore!) But the population of Penang state is only one third that of Singapore (1.8 million vs 5.6 million). So why the need for so much land reclamation in Penang?
Don’t underestimate the collective will of the people.
Remember how Penangites rallied together to “Save Penang Hill” around 1990. They succeeded. Then Penang Chief Minister Dr Lim Chong Eu of Gerakan/BN even lost his seat in the 1990 general election.
Remember how ordinary people campaigned to “Stop PGCC” (Penang Global City Centre project) in 2007-08? They succeeded – and Barisan Nasional lost Penang state government to the Pakatan Rakyat opposition parties in a shock outcome.
There is another compelling reason why we should stop this reclamation nonsense or “pesta tambak”.
Global warming is heating up the oceans, which are absorbing 90% of the heat in the climate system. “Ocean warming reduces mixing between water layers and, as a consequence, the supply of oxygen and nutrients for marine life,” warned the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Meanwhile, “ocean warming and acidification, loss of oxygen and changes in nutrient supplies, are already affecting the distribution and abundance of marine life in coastal areas, in the open ocean and at the sea floor.”
As a result, marine life is dwindling. Already, Penang fishermen claim that their catch has shrunk by 80% due to various factors including land reclamation.
So we should be doing all we can to protect our coastal waters – not dumping more sand and rocks into a “golden area for fisheries” (as the fishermen describe it).
What’s more, polar ice sheets and glaciers are melting at a faster rate. So sea levels are now rising twice as fast (3.6mm) than they were in the last century – and the rate is accelerating. The IPCC has warned that rising sea levels will displace hundreds of millions of coastal residents from their homes by this century. If we don’t take action to curb emissions, the rise in sea levels could be as much as 60-110cm by 2100.
We should be shoring up coastal defences – not reclaiming more land from the sea.
Say no to greed. Save this coastline. #PenangTolakTambak
|Please help to support this blog if you can.
Read the commenting guidlelines for this blog.
Are they trying to chase the low-income families out of the island? Because of their action, I predict that it will be very dangerous for our future generation. Is DAP trying to chase low income Penangites out of the island?
Open your eyes… there are plenty of affordable housing in the Island…don’t get into the habit of your lunar tic pal …about RM9m haram $$
Anil, it won’t be enough for the government. The will keep on reclaiming our lands to fill up their pocket. They have big appetite, they will occasionally approve one small housing area and call it affordable. I don’t know what they are fighting for? Better Malaysia or Better DAP.
Better Malaysia or Better DAP. More like the latter.
Who needs to shriek this out loud? It’s a no brainer since the days of Niao Kong.
Susu Teh. Still aroUnd? Not chase out of the island and go to kelantan where your idol PAS is located? Why go when you are doing so good and can afford to stay in the island.
This is called social engineering thro’ development for the rich & famous + taxing excessively on land transactions, land taxes (Bad-Assessment Rate) & other insane taxes.
See what has happened in HK where political-leveraged property development has created a big gulf between the haves (owning multiple properties) & have-nots (staying in animal cages).
XiChinPing (allegedly) oredi forcing 4 Hong Kong tychoons to donate lands to build affordable home for protesting hongkongers. 3 have complied except (one), who probably gets blacklisted by central china government sooner or later.
PRC in their early heydays of fast-track developing Shenzhen & other 1st Tier cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Dalian, Nanjing) welcomed with wide opened arms, wider than Great Wall of China, these HK property tycoons like Li Ka-Shing. And as rewards CCP gave these beneficiary tycoons great influence & positions in the Communist Central Committee. After the 1997 historic HK handover, these greedy-not-enough HK property tycoons with the blessings of CCP began to dictate & collude with HK politicians on how to develop HK as per their dreams & fancies by monopolising the property industry but at the expense of… Read more »
Singapore may also have got cheated on that project. It was like the Wild West at that time. The local warlords were powerful.
Some time ago, HK govt. realised they were falling behind China, and tried to build about 75,000 low-cost houses. The “free” market capitalists howled that it would “depress the market”.
From the most ancient civilizations, capitalism has been untenable without an underclass of slaves, now called employees, knowledge workers, gig economy agents, etc.
China is building a world’s largest convention centre in Shenzhen, ready to take over MICE in Hong Kong.
Shanghai will take over as financial centre of China.
Hong Kong youth better start to master Mandarin and stop speaking Cantonese!
This is how China treats her ‘prodigal’ son HK. After being helped by HK since the later 1980s when Deng Xiaoping led market-economy reforms & contributed to her economy (HK GDP was more than 85% of the entire China), HK is slowly but surely ‘demoted’. This operandi is similar to those who earlier opened shops in China with honest transfer of technology to be out competed & overtaken by China’s claims of their own technology prowess (via copy, reverse engineering, cheng-cheng-cheng-viola-my-new-invention!!). Be very wary when you deal with China. Especially the One Road One Belt offer which is actually a… Read more »
Samsung ends smartphone phone production in China
The music, a tinge of sadness. The last bastion of kampung, fishing village & emerald sea, home to marine life, our seafood security & natural space of soul serenity. This is the last sane place left on the island after the insane gentrification of Balik Pulau. The future of this last bastion is in our hands – to protect it for future generations or to surrender it to insane transformation probably into another PRC Chinese overseas satellite islands of the rich & famous. Oh yes, PRC’s Jackie Chan may have an interest after his original Gurney Drive seaview condo is… Read more »
Penang once a comfortable place for local Pennagites, now turned into a hot mess. No longer safe waking around, only Ang-mo can afford to do so.
The music hs religious undertone, trying to stir up emotion of certain group of people.
We must be factual, not being driven by emotion using religion to subconciously influence people.
I prefer My Sweet Lord by George Harrison,
Hare Rama Hare Krishna
Christians in Malaysia opened their eyes, when mission schools in Malaysia is in prayer recital controversy?
Is there still mission school in Malaysia?
All converted to national schools, losing their soul?
Very sad indeed!
China is using AI in classroom, but we are still bickering on religious issues in schools. How to progress?
Issue is not about current population but how more imports are coming willing to pay for the high priced properties in exchange for island living. Of course locals are not happy with such invasion when economy situation is not improving. Just like Hong Kong youth envious of foreigners with higher purchasing power!
Peng land look for chip chip wong fei hoong back packers inn for budget Doms at 20 to 30 ringgit. Many peng lang not prefer but insist to stay on the island Iike tu lang and susu teh. Tu lang gave up visiting his tree top mates in belum Valley and susu teh make a u turn instead of going to pas kb. Without DAP, life for them will be bored to death.
DAP today after 509 has mutated and lost its voice become a quiet party. Good time for Gerakan to come up with new agenda to win back voters. But Gerakan must not fell into trap of bashing DAP without its own plan. Otherwise Gerakan is no different from the current MCA.
The drone aerial view is clear but the background music is preaching the greatness of “almighty”?
Not much fishing activities onvthe ground as if fishing just purely recreational ?
Penang heartlanders may have to migrate to mainland Prai to make way for elite outsiders when the island is getting too expensive and congested? Or is this the hidden agenda of DAPCat to consolidate its power base?
Anyway today we witness 70th anniversary of PRC, with a parade showcasing its military might:
How Hong Kong Protesters Combat the Surveillance State From street CCTVs, smartphones, credit cards to social debit cards, the phobic CCP is using hitch surveillance to monitor every citizen to toe the line. Any thing you do, say or share that’s against them will be met by repercussions – police brutal tactics, employing gangsters to follow you or to harm you & your family members, & to smear your reputation. World famous Ai Weiwei, a Chinese contemporary artist and activist experienced the worst of political gangsterism from the CCP. If you are an IT expert, do check your Huawei phone… Read more »
The religion of growth, wealth and privilege (inequality), prosperity and dominance have doomed us. Whether it is “government largesse”, “free-market enterprise” or “public-private partnership”, it is the sucker masses who slog for and finance this insanity as consumers, investors, tax payers, etc. We are doing everything from mental gymnastics to prayers to frenetic consumption to evade this fact. Take a good look at what exists around while you can.
..and you typed this on a device with software via network that are all made possible by development, advancement, capitalism, free market, corporation and consumerism………obviously you had not had taken a good look yourself…hehe
The desperate denial of the existential threat ——————————–
“Open your eyes: This is what we stand to lose…”
Beyond the immediate future and local scene, the cumulative threat from such changes everywhere is far, far worse. It is the end of human civilization, an agonising end for billions and perhaps the end of humanity itself. It is time to end the pious denial and delusion.