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Thursday October 31, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Thursday October 31, 2013 MYT 8:29:48 AM
by ruben sario
Going green: The Heart of Borneo covers 220,000 sq km of forests.
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah is looking into ways of earning a sustainable income from the massive trans-boundary Heart of Borneo conservation initiative.
Senior state officials are scheduled to sign a memorandum of understanding with a British firm for a carbon sequestration programme during a two-day international conference on the Heart of Borneo initiative from Nov 11.
(The Heart of Borneo conservation agreement was initiated by the World Wide Fund for Nature to protect 220,000 sq km of remaining forests in Borneo. The agreement was signed by the Brunei, Indonesian and Malaysian governments on Feb 12, 2007 to support the initiative.)
Sabah Forest Department director Datuk Sam Mannan said the deal would see the British firm coming up with a proposal in about six months as to how the state could financially benefit from carbon sequestration efforts by keeping tract of forests intact.
“This was part of the ongoing international interest in reducing emissions from deforestation. If it works out, it would mean sustainable revenue for Sabah,” he said.
The Forestry Department is the main organiser of the conference with an anticipated participation of some 700 researchers, civil servants and representatives of local communities.
He said that tapping into Sabah’s conservation efforts was crucial as income from forest activities such as timber royalties now amounted to a mere RM100mil annually.
“This is the lowest in 40 years and we expect it to go down further to RM50mil in another five years.”
“We have to zero in on green capital and realise the value of our biodiversity,” said Mannan.
He said the state was earning as much as RM100,000 per month after imposing entrance fees into the Klias-Padas Damit forest reserves in the east coast Beaufort district, which is known for its unique proboscis monkeys, since July.
Tags / Keywords:
Environment, Heart of Borneo
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