Malaysia: Sarawak calls for aggressive enforcement against marine encroachment

BERNAMA New Straits Times 18 Oct 16;

MIRI: The Sarawak state government wants the authorities to deploy an aggressive enforcement approach in dealing with encroachment by foreign trawlers in the state's waters.

Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said although the current laws were adequate, he was disappointed over "poor enforcement" against such encroachment that could potentially destroy the fisheries industry in Sarawak.

"They (foreign vessels) left a trail of destruction and must be stopped as soon as possible," he said when launching Petronas-Sarawak Forestry Eco Marine project here today.

Adenan said one of the main problems in Sarawak involved foreign trawlers that used dredging methods to catch fish, which had destroyed marine life that was vital for the economy, especially in the fisheries industry as well as tourism and coral reefs.

Meanwhile Petronas chairman Tan Sri Sidek Hassan hoped the project would boost ecotourism and the livelihood of Sarawak fishermen, particularly in Miri.

He said a total of 1,750 unit of artificial reef balls would be deployed along the Miri-Sibuti Coral Reef National Parks, the largest marine park in Sarawak.

Petronas, in a statement issued to the media in conjuction with the project launch, said the reef balls weighing one ton each can last 500 years under the sea.

It said the reef balls would deter illegal fishing trawlers from the national park because their dragnet would be destroyed if entangled with the reef balls that had been planted around the coral reefs. - BERNAMA


Better enforcement needed to preserve state’s marine life – Adenan
Borneo Post 18 Oct 16;

MIRI: Strengthen enforcement and keep illegal trawlers at bay or face losing marine life, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem.

Authorities concerned should buck up or outsiders would continue to encroach into state waters, he stressed during the launch of the Petronas-Sarawak Forestry Eco Marine Project @ Miri-Sibuti Coral Reefs National Park at a hotel here today (Oct 18).

He said the state is blessed with an abundance of marine resources but if the rampant encroachment by foreigners is left unchecked, marine life in its waters would be seriously depleted.

Adenan applauded the effort of Petronas and Sarawak Forestry, saying the laying of artificial reefs of various types along the coastline was timely and should be intensified.

“If we don’t do it now, the corals will be swept under the sea.

“We want to help our local fisherman too, and apart from providing a good breeding ground for fish, it will also help to keep away fishing trawlers from coming in to steal our fish.

“If we love Sarawak, we all must do our part to preserve our environment,” he added before ending his speech.

Among those present were Petronas chairman Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan, Deputy State Secretary cum chairman for Petronas-Sarawak Forestry Eco Marine Project Datu Jaul Samion, Miri Mayor Adam Yii and Sarawak Forestry chief executive officer Wong Ting Chung.


‘Conservation hapless without enforcement’ — Adenan
Zaheera Johari & Philip Kiew Borneo Post 19 Oct 16;

MIRI: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem yesterday blamed poor enforcement and implementation for the rampant theft of marine resources and destruction of corals in Sarawak waters by foreign trawlers.

He was criticising the inaction by enforcement agencies on the many complaints of encroachment from local traditional fishermen.

“When complaints are made, excuses are made. The weakness is in the enforcement.

“Enforcement, not the law, is the deterrent. The law itself is not a deterrent as the best deterrent, according to David Marshal, is certainty of being caught. We must stop this as soon as possible – the sooner, the better,” he said in calling for action against encroaching foreign vessels.

He was speaking at the launch of the RM8 million Petronas-Sarawak Forestry Eco-Marine Conservation Project at Miri-Sibuti Coral Reefs National Park here yesterday.

Under the conservation project which kicked off last year, a total of 1,750 artificial reef balls will be deployed in stages at the coral reef and an awareness enhancement programme will be carried out until 2019.

The reef balls will deter illegal fishing trawlers from the national park because their dragnets will be destroyed if entangled with the artificial reef balls that have been planted around the coral reefs and act as underwater protection line to promote regeneration of coral reefs.

The Chief Minister further said the State was blessed with an abundance of marine resources but if the rampant encroachment by foreigners were left unchecked, marine life in its waters would be seriously depleted.

He suggested that Sarawak’s long coastline and the huge continental shelf which is as big as its land mass be better documented to facilitate effective protection and conservation of its ecology.

At the same time, he applauded this joint-effort by Petronas and Sarawak Forestry as timely and said it should be intensified.

“If we don’t do it now, the corals will be swept under the sea and with this, we want to help our local fisherman too, and apart from providing good breeding ground for fish, it will also prevent fishing trawlers from coming in to steal our fish.

“If we love Sarawak, we all should preserve our environment,” he said.

Miri-Sibuti Coral Reef National Park covers 186,930 hectares of water about 15 nautical miles from Miri shoreline and is the second largest marine park in Malaysia. It was gazetted on Feb 28, 2007 under the National Parks and Natural Reserves Ordinance 1998.

The project is to protect and regenerate dying coral reefs around the 12,200ha Sibuti Reef Complex within the 186,930ha Miri-Sibuti Coral Reefs National Park in northern Sarawak.

Present at the launch were Petronas chairman Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan, Deputy State Secretary and chairman of the Petronas-Sarawak Forestry Eco-Marine Conservation Project Datu Jaul Samion, Miri mayor Adam Yii and Sarawak Forestry chief executive officer Wong Ting Chung.

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