Kuala Belait’s receding coastline calls for long-term solution
A LONG-TERM coastal management strategy is needed to address Kuala Belait’s receding coastline along Jalan Maulana, according to grassroots leaders in the area.
Belait District Representative to the Legislative Council and Village Head of Mumong Yang Berhormat Hj Mohd Yusof Dulamin and Penghulu of Kuala Belait Hj Pungut Ali recently pointed out that the shoreline has become increasingly higher in the past five years, with remedial action needed to be taken before the sea water encroaches onto private and public property.
Several residents and grassroots leaders have already expressed their concern to YB Hj Mohd Yusof, who claims that the rising coastline has yet to receive attention, despite the issue being raised at the Legislative Council Meeting two years ago.
“The areas most likely to be affected by the rising seawater at this point in time are the Chinese and Muslim cemeteries along Jalan Maulana, which are the closest to the beach,” said YB Hj Mohd Yusof.
The receding coastline can be seen during windy evenings, when the rising tide brings the waves as close as a few hundred feet from the backyard of houses built along the beach side of Belait’s Jalan Maulana.
YB Hj Mohd Yusof said it may be “a couple of years” before property is directly threatened but cited the ongoing erosion in Danau, Tutong as an indicator that authorities need to implement in advance to prevent similar damage from taking place.
“I will raise the matter again next month when the Legislative Council Meeting commences because we do not want for a situation like in Danau or worse to happen in Belait,” said YB Hj Mohd Yusof.
The LegCo representative added that the authorities would be able to determine the best course of action through research but said that any coastal management strategy implemented needs to take into account the entire stretch of shoreline and not just specific parts.
“Whether they choose to build groynes or sea walls, they need to take into account how building one structure will impact the coastline in nearby areas, so that we do not end up with another problem,” said Yang Berhormat Hj Mohd Yusof.
The Brunei Times