Bali’s outlying island of Nusa Penida is facing a clear water crisis. The island, located just off the southern coast of Bali, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the province.
While local leaders have pledged to improve infrastructure on the island, including water management, the authorities are calling on the provincial government to step in and support.
Local reports suggest that one clean tank of water costs IDR 100,000 in Nusa Penida, which will last the average family three days. Over the course of a month, this adds up to over IDR 1 million. For businesses, this is considerably more costly.
Local political in Nusa Penida, I Ketut Juliarta, told the press, “Until now, there are still many people’s houses that have not had clean water, so they don’t want to buy clean water from outside.”
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He contented, “The pipings are all there, but there is no water there. How expensive is the money that must be spent by the community just to meet clean water, which is a necessity to support life? Then what is our role as policymakers, until now the water problem has not been solved.”
The Deputy Governor of Bali, known by his nickname Cok Ace, has responded to the comments issued by Juliarta and has revealed that he has met with investors from Germany who could bring technology that is capable of processing seawater into safe drinking water.
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Cok Ace has said, “If this technology is successful, then Nusa Penida will be used as an example. We are looking for any way to overcome this problem [of the water crisis in Nusa Penida], especially since this is a regular problem, especially in the dry season.”
The conversation around leveling up infrastructure on Nusa Penida is a hot topic at the moment. And an important one. Speaking late last month, The Regent of Klungkung, I Nyoman Suwirta, committed to ensuring that investment in water management and road infrastructure on the island comes to fruition.
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Yet, he, too, called on all stakeholders to come together to share resources and concrete the future of Nusa Penida. He invited a collaborative effort from all relevant parties so that complaints and concerns don’t tarnish the reputation of the vacation island.
Regent Suwirta said, “As felt, namely complaints about road infrastructure, congestion, clean water, electricity and many more. We in the regency cannot work alone.”
Regent Suwirta recently hosted the Deputy Minister of National Development Planning, and together they discussed plans to establish Nusa Penida as a National Tourism Strategic Area.
This is great news for tourists and for local people. This means that investment in the essential infrastructures and utility resources of water management will be flowing in. In the meantime, how can tourists help the clean water crisis in Nusa Penida?
It’s pretty straightforward; tourists should be really conscious of their clean water consumption. Do not waste water, whether that be drinking water, bath water, or shower water.
Of course, hotels, guesthouses, and villa hosts want their guests to have the most indulgent and enjoyable time possible on the island.
But an awareness of freshwater consumption on the island and an intention to not waste water during a visit will play an impactful role in supporting small businesses and local communities work through the crisis as more solutions and investment comes in.
Tourists should also be aware that the cost of bottled water on Nusa Penida, Nusa Ceningan, and Nusa Lembongan may be more expensive than on the main island of Bali.
Nusa Penida is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Bali. The quiet and remote island experiences many of the issues faced by small island communities around the world, including water scarcity and food security.
The move to establish the island as a National Tourism Strategic Area will see a huge injection of funds which will benefit both local communities and tourists visiting the area.
The infection of funds will not only tackle the clean water crisis in the long term but also address road infrastructure and also tourist safety at key attractions on the island.
It remains the case that tourists are being urged not to swim at the island’s most popular beaches due to strong currents and high waves.
The swimming ban comes from the highest authorities on the island as a move to keep tourists safe after tourists have died and been serenely injured after being swept out to sea.
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