Best of our wild blogs: 7 Aug 19

Fish Expedition Day 7 - Why do we need to kill the fishes?
wild shores of singapore

How do Cuckoos choose their hosts?
Singapore Bird Group

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9 in 10 S'pore youths willing to do their part for the environment, but want Govt to do more: Survey

NAVENE ELANGOVAN Today Online 7 Aug 19;

SINGAPORE — A survey by Mediacorp has found that the vast majority of Singapore youths are concerned about the impact of climate change and want to do their part to address the problem.

At the same time, they also want the Government to do more on this front — with nearly a third of those aged between 18 and 24, for example, believing that Singapore’s current infrastructure is inadequate to withstand the impact of climate change.

Conducted between July 20 and 24, the online survey polled 1,002 Singaporeans and permanent residents aged 18 and above on their views about climate change and the Government's actions on the issue. Days before the survey was carried out, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli described climate change as a “pressing priority and existential challenge”.

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About 30% of Singapore’s recyclable waste exported overseas in 2018: Masagos

Matthew Mohan Channel NewsAsia 6 Aug 19;

SINGAPORE: About 30 per cent of Singapore’s recyclable waste was exported to other countries last year, said Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli on Tuesday (Aug 6).

The bulk of recyclables are processed locally, he said in a written parliamentary reply.

Mr Masagos was responding to Non-constituency Member of Parliament Daniel Goh, who asked how much of Singapore's recyclable waste is exported to overseas processors, and which countries were the largest receivers of such waste from Singapore.

“Singapore recycles, on average, around 60 per cent of our total waste generated,” said Mr Masagos.

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Every Singaporean household throws away an average S$258 worth of food a year: Study

LOW YOUJIN Today Online 6 Aug 19;

SINGAPORE — Even though Singapore prides itself on all things culinary, a new study has found that each household here throws away an estimated S$258 worth of unconsumed food annually.

Across all households, that amounts to about S$342 million of wasted food a year. Put another way, an average household tosses away the equivalent of 52 plates of nasi lemak over 12 months.

The study, published on Tuesday (Aug 6), was conducted by the Singapore Environment Council (SEC), and looked at both household food waste, and the large amount of food lost before it ever gets to the customer — during production, packaging and storage, for example.

Two million tonnes of food is imported into Singapore, of which 393,000 tonnes is lost.

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Malaysia: 35ha of Pahang forest, peat land razed

T.N.Alagesh New Straits Times 6 Aug 19;

KUANTAN: Some 35ha of forest and peat land at Bukit Palas near Cherating here has been burning since Monday.

Thick smoke enveloped the area as firemen worked around the clock to prevent the blaze from spreading to other nearby areas.

Pahang Fire and Rescue Department chief Nor Hisham Mohammed said fire had destroyed some 25ha while another 10ha was still burning.

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Malaysia: Sun bear spotted in Jeli villages

Nor Fazlina Abdul Rahim New Straits Times 7 Aug 19;

KOTA BHARU: A sun bear has been spotted roaming the orchards in Kampung Reka and Kampung Timur near Kuala Belah, Jeli since last week.

Kelantan Wildlife and National Parks Department director Ady Ermanty Haniff Mohamed Hanif said the department received information on the matter from the villagers on July 31. He said the villagers were worried for their safety.

“Following that, four personnel from Jeli wildlife office went to the location to conduct checks. They also set up a trap using cempedak fruit,” he said when contacted.

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Indonesia president threatens to sack fire fighters if forest blazes not tackled

Agustinus Beo Da Costa Reuters 6 Aug 19;

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesian President Joko Widodo threatened on Tuesday to sack military and police officers fighting forest fires if they fail to extinguish the flames. He also promised government funds for high-tech equipment like drones to help tackle the blazes.

The Southeast Asian country has deployed thousands of military and police to douse forest fires after declaring an emergency in six provinces on the island of Sumatra and in the province of Kalimantan on Borneo.

“I phoned the military commander and the chief of police to tell them to replace those who can’t resolve forest and land fires,” Widodo told a co-ordinating meeting on tackling forest fires at the presidential palace.

“Never underestimate hot spots. Immediately put out a small fire, don’t wait until it gets bigger,” Widodo said.

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Indonesia: Riau task force deploys four helicopters to extinguish forest fires

Antara 6 Aug 19;

"Today, four helicopters were flown in to help the land-based task force tackle the land fire in Pelalawan and Siak," Deputy Commander of the task force Edwar Sanger stated here on Tuesday.
Pekanbaru, Riau (ANTARA) - The land and forest fire task force of Riau Province has deployed four helicopters on Tuesday to help douse the fire raging in the districts of Pelalawan and Siak.

"Today, four helicopters were flown in to help the land-based task force tackle the land fire in Pelalawan and Siak," Deputy Commander of the task force Edwar Sanger stated here on Tuesday.

The authority has detected dozens of hotspots in the two resource-rich districts since the past week, and peatland fire in the regions have produced haze that shrouded its neighboring Pekanbaru City.

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Indonesia: Parts of ASEAN to be fire-prone next week

Antara 7 Aug 19;

Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Australian monsoon can make parts of Southeast Asia prone to fires in the next week, according to the Fire Danger Rating System (FDRS) early warning system.

The land fire potential was detected in Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, and some small parts of Myanmar, Vietnam, and Laos on Aug 6-8, it stated.

"Currently, most parts of Indonesia and some other countries in the ASEAN have experienced the Australian monsoon, characterized by dry winds that blow from the southeast," Deputy for Meteorology of the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) Mulyono R. Prabowo stated here on Wednesday.

The weather is also affected by the anomaly of sea surface temperature in the Indonesian waters, especially on the south side of the equator; weak intensity of the El Nino phenomenon that hit the region since the end of 2018; and the Indian Ocean Dipole Mode.

This has triggered a drier season in 2019 than that in 2018, he stated.

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Indonesia: Drought affecting 20 districts, towns in West Java

Antara 6 Aug 19;

We have supplied more than 1.7 million liters of clean water to the families facing water scarcity
Bandung, W Java (ANTARA) - The West Java Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) reported Tuesday that this year's protracted drought has affected 20 districts and towns leaving 166,957 families facing water scarcity. Among the affected areas were located in the cities of Bogor and Cirebon as well as the districts of Bekasi, Bogor, Karawang, Bandung Barat, Sumedang, Tasikmalaya, Bandung, Sukabumi, Purwakarta, Subang, and Kuningan, head of the agency's rehabilitation and reconstruction unit, Budi Budiman Wahyu, said.

The total number of affected districts and towns increased from 13 on July 17 to 20 on August 5, he said, adding that the drought had threatened 20,621 hectares of agricultural land and left 166,957 families facing water scarcity.

"We have supplied more than 1.7 million liters of clean water to the families facing water scarcity," he said.

He still reviewed a plan to declare a drought as proposed by the BPBD because related authorities had offered concrete solutions to those affected, West Java Governor M. Ridwan Kamil said.

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