Act now to lessen impact of climate change, Govt urged – CETDEM

Stories by RAHIMY RAHIM, EMBUN MAJID, LEE YEN MUN and JOSEPH KAOS

PETALING JAYA: An environmentalist wants the Government to take steps to lessen the impact of unusual rainfall due to climate change.

Centre for Environment, Tech­nology and Development Malaysia (Cetdem) chairman Gurmit Singh said it should prohibit development in flood-prone areas.

He said some developers build their infrastructure in low-lying deltas and coastal areas where floods occur.

“They must realise that a change in climate is already taking place and policies must be implemented so Malaysia will not end up like Thailand.”

Thailand is facing its worst floods and people and businesses are forced to build water barriers around their homes and workplaces.

Drainage and Irrigation Depart­ment (DID) national hydrology and water resources division director Datuk Lim Chow Hock said Malaysia was receiving higher-than-average rainfall even when it wasn’t the monsoon season.

“In terms of national average, we received some 2,400mm per year in the peninsula alone,” he said.

“We estimate that the figures will be much higher this year.

“Given the current outlook, the level will spiral to at least 2,700mm while Sabah and Sarawak can go up to 3,000mm of rain this year,” he told The Star.

He said this year’s rainfall was exceptionally higher.

“Prolonged light rain in a few days followed by at least twice heavy rain in a month from November until March could lead to flooding.”

Article source http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2011/10/28/nation/9787967&sec=nation

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