One of Malaysia's most popular hill stations; it is well known for its cool weather, hill cottages and tea plantations. A soil erosion study in 1995 found the Cameron Highlands to be the hill resort most affected by erosion in the country, due to the rapid increase in inappropriate development. The study found that the road from Tanah Rata to Robinson Falls had an average of two gullies (the most severe category of erosion) every kilometre. The Cameron Highlands Structure Plan disclosed that between 1950s and 1990s, silt levels in Cameron Highlands rivers increased 11-fold. Various surveys from 1993 to 1996 by the DOE, the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute and the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (FRIM) found that land clearance for human settlement has caused more erosion than any other activity. The 1993 Development Impact Study of Cameron Highlands reported the annual average temperature had increased three degrees since the 1960s. Daily average rainfall dropped from 2.7 millimetres (mm) in the period 1951 to 1960, to 2.58mm in 1981 to 1990. The number of rain-days per month was reduced by three to five days. A DOE study showed that water quality in the Ringlet Lake as well as in the Ikan, Terla, Telom and Bertam Rivers was degraded.
Published on 20 September 2006 - 12:41am