Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Sabah's Crocker Range approved as biosphere reserve under Unesco

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s 350,854ha Crocker Range has been approved as a Biosphere Reserve by the International Coordinating Council for Biosphere Reserve (CRBR), a programme under Unesco.

“The 26th meeting of the coordinating council at Jonkoping University in Sweden gave its unanimous approval for Crocker Range,” said state Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun in a statement.

He said the Malaysian delegation was headed by Natural Resource and Environment Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Zoal Azha Yusoff, while the state government was represented by Sabah Parks director Jamili Nais and Sabah Biodiversity Centre director Dr Abdul Fatah Amir.

He said the Crocker Range Biosphere Reserve covers 350,584ha of terrestrial ecosystems and natural landscapes, making it the largest protected area in Malaysia.

“I am proud to say that this is the third international recognition for Sabah and reflects our strong commitment to protect and conserve nature for future generations,” said Masidi.

Kinabalu Park was made a World Heritage site in 2000 and Ulu Segama-Kinabatangan a Ramsar Site in 2009.

“The CRBR is not only crucial for the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystems, but also in providing water resources for the more than one million population within the west coast and interior parts of Sabah,” he said.

More importantly, CRBR is a platform for sustainable development, where interaction and involvement of people in the decision-making process is compulsory, and development is based on continuous scientific research and monitoring.