Water Watch Penang has successfully organised its very first-ever forum, online via ‘zoom application’ on the 9th of June 2020. Focusing on the topic of water crises, the title of the forum was ‘Averting Future Water Crises: the Way Forward in Malaysia was held from 9.00 pm to 10.00 pm. The online forum attracted more than 50 participants from public and private institutions as well as other NGOs with 4 speakers who were Prof Dr Chan Ngai Weng, a Professor in Universiti Sains Malaysia and President of Water Watch Penang, Prof Dato Dr Mohd Ekhwan Haji Toriman, Professor in Centre for Research in Development, Social and Environment, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Prof Dr Narimah Samat, Professor in Geographic Information System and Dean of School of Humanities, Universiti Sains Malaysia, and Dr Hong Chern Wern, Senior Facilitator and Life Member of Water Watch Penang.
Moderated by Dr Nik Norma Nik Hasan, who is an Adjunct Fellow at United Nations University – International Institute for Global Health (UNU-HGH), Prof Dr Chan started the forum by highlighting the water issues in Malaysia and Penang especially during these climate crises with several suggestions as a way forward. Prof Dato Ekhwan continued as the second speaker on ‘Water Crisis: From Sustainability River Catchment Perspective’ that covers on issues on demand management that have been affected by not only population growth, but also pollution, deforestation, governance and so forth.
Next Dr Hong, presented on ‘The Role of Water Watch Penang as NGO in preparing Penangites for Climate Crisis’ by focusing on structural methods that utilises water-saving devices and rainwater harvesting, and non-structural methods such as education for the Penangites coupled with partnerships with the public and private sector to achieve the objectives in water demand management in the face of climate crisis. Prof Dr. Narimah concluded the forum presentation on ‘Impacts of Land use and land use cover changes on water resources’ with highlights on the issue of a water crisis in high-density development, unplanned development, and size of urban areas.
The speakers were forwarded with various questions regarding the water crisis in Penang and how to avert them, which could be viewed on the recorded version uploaded onto our Facebook page or our Youtube channel.
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