Awg Tengah: S’wak ahead of other states in M’sia, SEA in meeting Paris Agreement 2015 requirements

Posted on 01 Mar 2024
Source of News: Borneo Post

by Jacqueline Raphael

(From seventh left) Ting, Lee and Jack with representatives from agencies and companies after the MoU signing ceremony today.

MIRI (March 1): Sarawak is ahead of other states in Malaysia and regions in Southeast Asia in meeting the requirements of the Paris Agreement 2015 to deal with climate change, says Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan.

He said this is evident in the current energy generation mix in the state which mainly comprises 70 per cent from hydropower, and the carbon emission intensity of Sarawak’s power system had been reduced by 73 per cent between 2010 and 2021.

“We are exploring ways to decarbonise our transport system using the Autonomous Rapid Transit (ART) and integrate with digital solutions to create a seamless experience using hydrogen fuel cells.

“This becomes the foundation towards decarbonizing our public transport system with aims to reduce carbon footprint from land transport in Kuching City by 15 per cent by 2030,” he said.

Awang Tengah’s speech was read by Sarawak Transport Minister Dato Sri Lee Kim Shin during the Memorandum of Undertaking (MoU) signing ceremony for SOP (standard operating procedure) for Peat Fire Prevention and Suppression between Natural Resources and Environmental Board (NREB) and private-landowners in Kuala Baram today.

Awang Tengah said Sarawak is also the first state to have legislations for regulating carbon storage and the reduction of carbon emissions in Malaysia, with the amendments to the Sarawak Land Code (Carbon Storage) Rules 2022 and the enactment of the Forest (Forest Carbon Activity) Rules 2022 to facilitate carbon trading.

According to him, these initiatives were further strengthened when the Sarawak Legislative Assembly passed the Environment (Reduction of Greenhouse Gases Emission) Bill on November 20 last year, which aimed to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, promote carbon capture and storage and mitigate climate change effects to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The Second Minister for Natural Resources and Urban Development as well as Minister of International Trade, Industry and Investment said the control of haze in Malaysia is another chapter in the government’s battle to ensure environmental sustainability is secured for current and future generations.

He said Malaysia had signed the Asean Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution (AATHP) together with nine other member countries of Asean in 2002, during the World Conference and Exhibition on Land and Forest Fire Hazards.

“The agreement is one of the first such regional arrangements in the world which came into force on November 25, 2003, that binds a group of contiguous states to tackle transboundary haze pollution resulting from land and forest fires.

“Malaysia had also communicated with our neighbouring country through diplomatic channels to extend our willingness and readiness to assist them in firefighting in the event of forest or peat fire outbreaks,” he said.

Touching on today’s MoU signing ceremony, he said this was a great and well-planned initiative from the NREB to tackle the recurrence of peat fire outbreaks at Kuala Baram which has about 8,000 hectares of peat fire prone areas around the vicinity of Bandar Baru Permyjaya, Desa Senadin and Curtin University Malaysia.

Awang Tengah said the effort has finally paid off in tackling the annual problem with a significant decline of peat area burnt from 2,218 hectares in 2019 to 683.5 hectares in 2020 and to only 14.5 hectares in 2023.

“However, this result is only achievable with the support of the agencies and the landowners working as a team through sharing of experience, resources and periodical monitoring of the fire prone areas,” he added.

The MoU was signed between NREB and Naim Land Sdn Bhd, Permy Development Sdn Bhd, Linau Mewah Sdn Bhd, Woodman Sdn Bhd, Curtin University Malaysia, Miri Housing Development Realty Sdn Bhd as well as Miri North City Development Sdn Bhd.

Also present at the ceremony were Deputy Minister For Tourism, Creative Industry And Performing Arts I (Tourism) Datuk Sebastian Ting and NREB Sarawak Controller Jack Liam.



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