Waterfalls a dry and sorry sight


BY EMMELINE TAN AND OPALYN MOK

PENANG: The sound of water gushing fills the air at the Titi Kerawang waterfall, but no water has cascaded down the rocks for the past two months. 

Rocks and soil are arid as water from the once popular waterfall in Teluk Bahang is channelled through pipes into a water treatment plant nearby. 

Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) production manager K. Jeyabalan says this has been happening during the dry season for the past few years because there is not enough excess water after a certain amount is diverted for treatment. 

“Titi Kerawang is a small water supply centre to the Balik Pulau area, producing 15 million litres of water per day compared to the 135 million litres per day produced by the Teluk Bahang dam,” he said. 

NO WATER: The Titi Kerawang waterfall bed during the dry season. At the top of the waterfall is PBAPP's water pupm station.

“We can’t help it if the waterfall dries up. Penang doesn’t have enough water supply.” 

At the Chin Farm waterfall in Batu Ferringhi, once a popular picnic spot, there were only trickles of water. 

Water in the pool was murky brown and almost dried up, leaving dry graffiti-covered rocks. The narrow dirt lane leading to the waterfall was marred by development work.  

Tourist guide Joann Khaw said they used to bring tourists to popular spots such as the Chin Farm and Titi Kerawang waterfalls but stopped doing so about 10 years ago. 

“The places have become too dirty,” she said. 

She added that the only spectacular waterfall left that she knew of was the one in the Penang Botanical Gardens but this was closed to the public as it was now a PBAPP reservoir. Malaysia Nature Society Penang branch chairman Kanda Kumar said Penang was a water-stressed island, with a lot of water stored for human usage instead of flowing into rivers.  

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