The published report about Malaysia depleting its natural resource is indeed most alarming.
The report by Wetlands International – the Netherlands based satellite observatory on deforestation and damage to the world’s ecological system alleges that Malaysia is truly raping the earth – beating the whole of Asia.
According to their report made from satellite observations, Malaysia is guilty of a very serious crime against nature. The country is said to be deforesting at an alarming rate that is three times faster than ALL of Asia.
It adds that in the last five years the Malaysian government has allowed 353,000 hectares of peat land to be destroyed and mostly converting to palm oil plantations.
Now, the BN government must not keep quiet. It should sue the pants off the Netherlands based Wetlands International organization. How can they put this well managed country in such bad light by stating that Malaysia is deforesting Sarawak at 3.5 times faster in entire Asia and deforesting its peat swamps at 11.7 times faster than all of Asia?
Didn’t the U.S. Secretary of State so very recently praise the country (as reported by our DPM) and attested that other developing nations must emulate us? So how can we be the worst rapist of our environment in the entire Asia?
It is not good enough for the government to just dismiss the report as ‘baseless’ or even to ignore, as the consequences are far too high a stake for the nation’s future.
If the government does not sue the butt off these reporters, then it means that the report is true. And that means the USA must be very embarrassed.
Now, in the event if this report is true, then there are two questions that the government must answer as it owes the world including the rakyat an explanation:
(1) Where did all the timber go to? Who authorized and who benefited from the rape of our forests?
(2) If we have converted the peat swamps into palm oil, who are the beneficiaries? How was the contract awarded? Were our scientific community consulted to establish if this is the right thing to do for the good of generations to come?
If the government chooses to ignore, and if the report is confirmed true, then some NGO or a responsible agency must take the government of Malaysia to task.
Development is not at the risk of the environment but it must be sustainably managed. Above all there must be acountability and transparency. Any attempts to hide is futile because the four corners of the world are under the watchfull eyes of the satellite.