Best of our wild blogs: 8 Jul 19

Return of leathery corals to Terumbu Pempang Tengah
wild shores of singapore

21 Jul (Sun): R.U.M. mangrove cleanup
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative

Punggol Point Beach
Offshore Singapore

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Air and water quality in Singapore not affected by Pasir Gudang pollution: Masagos

Amir Yusof Channel NewsAsia 8 Jul 19;

SINGAPORE: The air and water quality in Singapore have not been affected by the recent pollution incidents in Pasir Gudang, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli said in Parliament on Monday (Jul 8).

He was responding to a question from Member of Parliament (MP) for Tanjong Pagar Melvin Yong on whether Singapore has been impacted by the pollution given its close proximity, and if authorities are monitoring developments closely.

Since Jun 20, more than 1,000 schoolchildren in Pasir Gudang have experienced breathing problems and nausea. Malaysian authorities are still trying to determine the source of the pollution.

All schools in the area were ordered to close from Jun 25 for three days, but students displayed similar symptoms hours after the schools reopened. On Sunday (Jul 7), at least 11 students at four Pasir Gudang schools were reported to have suffered headaches, nausea and vomiting.

Mr Masagos confirmed that, so far, no toxic chemicals have been detected within Singapore as a result of the incidents in Johor.

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Malaysia: Johor DOE receives eight complaints over pollution at Sg Kopok

The Star 7 Jul 19;

ISKANDAR PUTERI (Bernama): The Johor Environment Department (DOE) has received eight complaints over pollution at Sungai Kopok, Ulu Tiram since 2018.

State Local Government, Urban Well-being and Environment Committee chairman Tan Chen Choon said the complaints were on its foul smell and dark colour, and incidents of dead fishes in the river.

He said investigations were carried out following the complaints and it was found that the pollution was caused by the discharge of industrial effluents with high organic load, especially from palm oil-based operations such as oleochemicals, and soap-based operations, biodiesel as well as food-based manufacturing.

"Although the plants are equipped with effluent treatment facilities, there are a few that have been negligent in controlling discharge of effluents from their premises.

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Malaysia: Fish-bombing deaths - Agriculture Ministry waiting full report from cops

martin carvalho, hemananthani sivanandam, rahimy rahim, and tarrence tan The Star 8 Jul 19;

KUALA LUMPUR: The Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry is awaiting the full police report on the two Chinese tourists and their local divemaster who were believed to have been killed by fish bombs while diving in waters off Semporna in Sabah's east coast on Friday (July 5).

Its minister Datuk Salahuddin Ayub said that such cases were rare and he would wait for the full details from the police before making any comments.

"We will wait for the actual report from the police. I think the police can investigate it swiftly," he told reporters at the parliament lobby Monday (July8).

It was reported that tourism operators are blaming fish-bombing activities for the deaths, but the police have yet to officially confirm it.

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Malaysia, Johor: Sungai Kim Kim victims to file lawsuit

remar nordin The Star 8 Jul 19;

JOHOR BARU: Victims of the Sungai Kim Kim toxic pollution and the Pasir Gudang Pollution Action Committee will be filing a lawsuit at the Johor Baru High Court soon.

Led by lawyer Kamarudin Ahmad, it will be filed on July 17 against 11 defendants, including the state government and the Johor Mentri Besar.

“The lawsuit represents 160 people, including 34 students, who fell ill, and 120 fishermen from Pasir Gudang, whose livelihood were badly affected by the pollution.

“It will also include seeking RM5mil in compensation for general damages suffered by Irfan Wafiy Idham Wazir.

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Indonesia has lost land equal to size of Jakarta in last 15 years

Kharishar Kahfi The Jakarta Post 7 Jul 19;

Ever since taking office in Flores, East Nusa Tenggara, in December, Nagekeo Regent Johanes Don Bosco Do has been receiving grim reports from residents living in coastal areas in the northern and southern parts of the regency.

According to observations from local officials and residents, waves from the Flores Sea have eroded the coast of Aeramo village, the region’s most populous village with 6,000 people, by 3 to 4 meters each year.

“I have seen firsthand that beaches are facing erosion,” Johanes said.

Indonesia, the world’s largest archipelagic nation, is losing its coastal areas due to rising sea levels and unsustainable economic activities.

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Indonesia: Riau sees human-elephant conflicts double in 2019

The Jakarta Post 8 Jul 19;

The number of conflicts between residents and Sumatran elephants doubled in Riau during the first half of this year compared to the same period last year, data from the Riau Resource Conservation Center (BBKSDA) shows.

"Data recorded between January and June this year shows that there has been a sharp increase compared to the same period last year," BBKSDA Riau chief Suharyono said in Pekanbaru city, Riau, on Saturday, as quoted by Antara.

The center recorded 30 conflicts between wild elephants and residents in various parts of the province between January and June this year, a spike from the 16 cases recorded over the same period last year.

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Oil giant Total's chief announces new unit to invest in forests

AFP Yahoo News 7 Jul 19;

Aix-en-Provence (France) (AFP) - The head of French energy giant Total announced Saturday that the company would invest a hundred million dollars annually on a new forest preservation and reforestation project.

"We want to set up a business unit to invest in projects that will preserve forests," chief executive Patrick Pouyanne told a meeting to discuss economic issues in Aix-en-Provence, in the south of France.

The company would spend $100 million a year on the project, he said.

"The most effective way today to eliminate carbon, for less than $10 a tonne, is reforestation," he added.

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