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DOE to keep an eye on heavy industries in SCORE area

October 31, 2011


STAY GREEN: Ismail (right) joining Halimah (centre) in planting a seedless rambutan sapling to mark the opening of Environment Week. Also in the photo is Jane (second left).

KUCHING: Department of Environment (DOE) has set up a special unit in Bintulu to monitor heavy industries for the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) area at Samalaju Industrial Park.

DOE state director Ismail Ithnin on Saturday said the department would station more staff at the unit by the middle of next year to ensure all industries in the area comply with DOE legislations and regulations.

He added currently only Tokuyama Malaysia Sdn Bhd’s detailed environmental
impact assessment (DEIA) had been approved by the department.

“I think at the moment the headquarters has received four projects for approval. One of them is Tokuyama, which has already been approved.

“The ones awaiting approval are Asia Minerals Ltd, OM Materials and Press Metal Sdn Bhd,” he said after attending the launch of State Environmental Week at Sarawak Cultural Village (SCV).

DOE director of evaluation, Halimah Hassan and SCV general manager Jane Lian Labang attended the event.

Ismail added according to the department’s environmental impact assessment (EIA) requirements, one of the major issues at Samalaju is scheduled waste.

“I think the main problem will be concerning scheduled waste. Since these are high tech industries, we won’t have much problem in terms of emission.

“Scheduled waste will become a problem if organisations don’t practice 3R (recycling, recovering and reuse),” he explained.

Ismail said companies, which do not comply with DOE legislation, would be issued warnings or penalty in accordance with the law.

He added the state DOE would be working very closely with Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) and State Planning Unit (SPU) to monitor the environmental impact of these projects.

Halimah said the government is always committed to protect and conserve the environment by implementing legislations such as Environmental Policy, National Biological Diversity Policy and National Climate Change Policy.

Through NREB, DOE has also launched the Rakan Alam Sekitar (RAS) programme as the eyes and ears of environment related agencies.

“I have been informed that from 46,000 registered RAS members throughout the country, almost 16,000 of them are from Sarawak,” she said in her speech yesterday.

Among the activities held during Environmental Week were environment quiz, colouring contest and ‘enviro-race’.

The event was participated by 200 students from schools and higher learning institutes in Santubong and Kuching.

The theme for this year’s event is ‘Environment Conservation, Our Responsibility’.

source: The Borneo Post online (31/10/2011)