IN conjunction with World Environment Day celebrated this month, Global Environment Centre (GEC) hosted a web forum titled Ecosystem Restoration Journey that was in line with the theme for the year, “Ecosystem Restoration”.
As a participant of the global movement, #GenerationRestoration, GEC through this forum shared its experience in ecosystem restoration and raised awareness on the role and importance of partnerships with different stakeholders.
GEC is a Malaysian non-profit organisation and supports ecosystem protection and rehabilitation.
GEC director Faizal Parish said the world’s ecosystems sustained life on earth, which is home to an incredible diversity of plants and animals, including every species we depend on for food, fibre and resources for life.
“Without intact natural ecosystems, we will not have clean water to drink or air to breathe and global climate change will spiral out of control.
“Destruction and over-exploitation of natural resources and forests have led to the evolution of new human diseases such as Covid-19,” he said.
He added that only by restoring the balance of the ecosystems could risk of future threats be reduced.
“Amid the degradation that continues to threaten us, it is good stewardship and restoration of ecosystems that will help rebuild the natural support system for the planet.
“In Malaysia, we are facing key challenges that need to be addressed through such restoration.
“Degradation of peatlands is leading to increased fires and haze that poison our air, while loss of catchment forests releases soil that choke rivers and pollute our water supply.
“Coastal development has wiped out mangroves and coral reefs and are destroying our marine life,” he said.
He called on all Malaysians to take action over the next 10 years to slow and halt the loss of the remaining critical ecosystems, and slowly but surely reverse the tide of degradation.
Faizal also called on the government and people to maintain vigilance against encroachment and illegal harvesting of natural resources and prevent peat land and forest fires in the coming dry season.
“Malaysians must be more vigilant and stand up against the wanton and irresponsible destruction of the environment,” he said.