KUALA LUMPUR – The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has instructed relevant departments and agencies to assess the impact of land reclamation activities in Penang.
Its minister, Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, said the departments involved were the Department of Environment, National Hydraulic Research Institute of Malaysia, Peninsular Malaysia Forestry Department and Department of Marine Parks Malaysia.
“It is an issue that needs to be taken seriously by the Penang government and they should take appropriate action as the land reclamation activities can have a serious impact on the environment including the mangroves, the breeding of fish, turtles and the likes,” he said in a statement on Friday.
Wan Junaidi also expressed hope that the state’s Local Government, Traffic Management and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow to contact him directly regarding the issue.
He said even though the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) had yet to be carried out, but the issue should be taken seriously.
According to media reports, the reclamation project covers an area of 809.73 hectares in Permatang Damar Laut and is feared that the construction of three artificial islands would destroy the ecosystem and affect the income 1,700 of fishermen in the area. – BERNAMA