According to The Star, the Kedah Government has approved logging activities at the Pedu, Muda and Ahning dam catchment areas, a move that is expected to generate about RM16bil in revenue for the state.
Mentri Besar Azizan Abdul Razak said the move was necessary to cover the high expenditure incurred by the state following the petrol price increase. The move was a reaction to the Federal Government's failure to pay an annual compensation of RM100mil since 2003 following the state’s decision to cancel its proposed heli-harvesting project to log timber in catchment areas.
A reader of my blog reacted:
The March 8 Elections results showed that all Malaysians want a change, they want a Government who is willing to serve, who will put aside all differences for the common good, and to act responsibly to its citizens and to the country in general.
The report that the Kedah government will allow logging in the Catchment areas Kedah approves logging activities show a total lack of this responsibility, and that it is utterly uncaring for the future of the State.
Has the State Government conducted an EIA study of the impact of such felling, on whether the felling will affect the water sufficiency of the State, and whether the removal of the limited resource will permanently damage the forest reserve surrounding the catchment areas.
I feel that the State in doing this, is "cutting off the nose to spite the face". Remember, logging is a 'destructive' industry, and what is done cannot be undone.
Please reconsider. If we just look around us, we already can observe that Cameron Highlands is fast approaching the state of being irreversibly damaged through wanton development.
Tam Yeng Siang (his letter is forwarded to environmental NGOs, The Star and TV3)
I personally agree with Tam's observation. We have had enough problem with maintaining our source of drinking water and now the state government wants to allow logging at the water catchment areas in Kedah.
Since neighbouring Penang and Perlis obtain their water supply from Kedah, the states should react to the Kedah MB Azizan's decision.
There should be a reason why the federal government had wanted to compensate the state to stop its logging activities and why it has failed to keep its promise.
Our natural resources and environment should not be exploited by any politicians for their own political interest.