AN initiative to protect the environment saw 58 volunteers taking part in a jungle trekking expedition, tree planting, rubbish collecting and turtle releasing activities at Pantai Kerachut in Penang National Park.
In conjunction with Malaysia’s National Environment Day which falls on Oct 21 every year, the volunteers joined a full-day programme aimed at conserving the environment.
During the Turtle Conservation Programme the volunteers released two turtles at the beachfront there.
State Environment Department (DOE) director Sharifah Zakiah Syed Sahab said the turtles released were one and one-and-a-half years old.
“The turtles were released to their natural habitat out at sea as a symbolic gesture for our Turtle Conservation Programme.
“Volunteers started off with jungle trekking in the Penang National Park.
“After that, they gathered at Pantai Kerachut and worked together to plant 100 ambong- ambong trees, paint the turtle conservation area fence and pick up rubbish from the beach,” she said.
“We selected ambong-ambong trees specifically as turtles like to lay eggs underneath these trees.
“As turtles are facing risk of extinction especially from landscape changes caused by development and plastic pollution, we want to retain their natural habitat for them to lay eggs.”
She added that as Malaysia is one of the countries with mega biodiversity, she hoped such programmes would create awareness on flora and fauna conservation.
The programme on Nov 18 was organised as the Flex CSR campaign by the DOE, Flex Penang, Wildlife and National Parks Department, Fisheries Department and Persatuan Sahabat Belia Pulau Pinang.
During the full-day programme, 25 Flex employees and 33 participants from the other organisations hiked to Pantai Kerachut in small batches.
Flex Penang general manager Ng Sin Kiew said they donated the 100 ambong-ambong trees and the wooden blinds installed at the Turtle Conservation Centre.
“At Flex, our aim is to make products that improve the world while enabling market-leading brands to maintain a competitive, enduring advantage and contribute to a cleaner, healthier future.
“We apply an accountable, ethical approach to everything we do and we are committed to driving meaningful environmental and community initiatives across the world.
“Thus, I am very pleased that Flex is able to play an important role in this programme,” he said.