JOHOR BARU: The main cause of the mass of dead fish found along Pantai Lido here is due to ecosystem changes in the water and not pollution from effluents, says Johor Local Government, Urban Wellbeing and Environment Committee chairman Tan Chen Choon.
He said initial investigations by the Department of Environment (DoE) found the waters here were free of pollution from industrial or sewage sources.
The DoE, he said, had conducted readings at the location, and found changes in the ecosystem within its waters.
"The parameter readings of the dissolved oxygen (DO) for the suitability of marine life is 5.0mg/l – compared to the actual DO rate recorded in the waters of Lido Beach at 3.6mg/l.
"The findings conclude that there had been changes in the ecosystem of the waters resulting in the dead fish found on Lido Beach," he said in a statement here on Tuesday (Sept 3).
Tan was responding to the incident of dead fish washed up along Pantai Beach in front of the Sultanah Aminah Hospital last Friday and Saturday (Aug 30 and Aug 31).
The incident was posted on a Johor Facebook environmental page "Pray For Pasir Gudang" on Friday, and public complaints to the authorities followed the next day due to a stench.
The Jementah assemblyman said the state government was aware of public concerns over the discovery of the dead fish.
"The timely public response has helped the state DoE to quickly act to identify any possible factor that led to the incident.
"On Aug 28, DoE conducted a field investigation together with the Johor Baru City Council while the Johor Baru District Fisheries Department acted to analyse samples from the water with the assistance of police," he added.
The state government, said Tan, had also asked DoE to monitor the water quality and take corrective action to ensure there was no recurrence of such incidents.
The Fisheries Department's role, he added, was necessary to complement DoE's efforts in addressing the long-term ecosystem changes in the waters.
"Any development related to the water quality investigation and field studies of Pantai Lido will be updated from time to time.
"The state government and its related agencies have called for public cooperation to conserve the environment, especially the rivers in Johor, by channelling information of any suspicious activity that may lead to pollution," he said.