New law being prepared to deal with new environmental complexityDoE

10-Nov-2017 Intellasia | New Straits Times | 6:00 AM Print This Post

The government will enact a new law on protecting nature to better tackle current environmental issues in Malaysia. Department of Environment (DoE) director-general Datuk Dr Ahmad Kamarulnajuib Che Ibrahim said it was necessary to have a new Act with the complexity of current environmental problems. “Environmental issues have become complex with the rapid change in the economy and emergence of many new pollutants,” he told reporters after opening the national-level oil spill control training in Gambang here this morning. Kamarulnajuib said the present Environmental Quality Act 1974 was insufficient to deal with the new and complex environmental issues. “The new Act will replace the Environmental Quality Act,” he said. On the status of the new law, he said the Attorney-General was now looking through the proposal. “We hope that the new Act will be ready by next year,” he said.

Kamarulnajuib said the new Act would expand the scope of environmental protection and take a more holistic approach to safeguard the environment. “We (through the new Act) will look at everything in a wider context such as fines (on offenders). “It (new Act) will tackle various environmental problems such as those related to bauxite (mining in Pahang),” he said.

Beginning yesterday, the three-day event drew representatives from various government agencies and private sector.

A simulation of oil spill incidents and methods to tackle the problem were demonstrated to the participants. Earlier, Kamarulnajuib said the training was necessary to foster closer cooperation among various government agencies and ensure effective response to oil spills nationwide.

He said such cooperation was needed as there were 149 cases of oil spill in Malaysian waters between 2009 and October this year. “Response and clean-up operations involve multiple agencies and their cooperation is greatly needed, especially from frontline agencies such as the Marine Department of Malaysia, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, police air wing unit and Department of Environment,” he said. He said rapid joint response was vital to prevent oil spills from spreading further and causing massive damage to the environment and marine ecosystem.


Category: Malaysia

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