KUCHING: Waste can become wealth, said State Secretary Tan Sri Mohd Morshidi Abdul Ghani.
“There is a need to completely rethink what ‘waste’ is. Our new thinking should be ‘trash to cash’,” Morshidi said at the opening of the two-day Industrial By-Products Management and Business Opportunities Conference.
Sarawakians could learn from developed countries, he said, adding there were numerous possibilities to turn waste into business.
With heavy industrialisation from the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy masterplan, industrial waste from the state could become as much as one-fourth of the national output.
As such, there is a need to better manage by-products.
Sarawak was committed to lay the foundation by providing basic infrastructure, said Morshidi.
One critical requirement is the need for a proper and systematic management of the industrial by-products generated.
“The state government is aware of this requirement and is developing an Integrated Waste Management System for the secure and safe management of waste generated in Samalaju Industrial Park,” he told participants at the Borneo Convention Centre Kuching.
The integrated system will provide one-stop services for the management of wastes generated in industrial park, either for disposal, recovery or reuse and includes a Waste Management Centre of international standard to be located in Maskat, about 30km from Bintulu.
Morshidi said the conference was particularly relevant since most industries at Samalaju, which is near Bintulu, are up and running.
More than 200 participants from private and public sectors as well as institutions of higher learning attended the conference, which was organised by the state government in collaboration with the industries operating in Samalaju.
The conference saw speakers from United Kingdom, France, Norway, South Korea, Germany and Malaysia delivering presentations on the current issues and latest trends in industrial by-products management.
Some of the conference participants will get the chance to see for themselves the vast potential and progress of Samalaju.
The conference was organised by State Planning Unit of the Chief Minister’s Department in collaboration with Sakura Ferroalloys Sdn Bhd, Pertama Ferroalloys Sdn Bhd and OM Materials (Sarawak) Sdn Bhd, and sponsored by Regional Corridor Development Authority, Sarawak Energy Bhd, Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd and Sarawak Convention Bureau.