Sunday, September 04, 2016

Piasau Nature Reserve in Miri to get timely boost

MIRI: The ecological and aesthetic values of the community-based Piasau Nature Reserve (PNR) here will be given a boost with the implementation of the ‘Bring Back Rainforest Development Plan’.

Under the plan, a total of 10,000 trees of various species will be planted in the next three years. It is projected that within 20 to 30 years the forest will become a rainforest, thus auguring well to make it one of the premier nature reserves in the region.

Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud is expected to launch the ‘Bring Back Rainforest Development Plan’ at the reserve in conjunction with his official birthday on Sept 11. Mirians and others from all strata of society will plant 1,000 trees on that day.

How has the local community and the relevant agencies responded so far towards the various stages of the project and what is the success rate?

To answer these questions, thesundaypost obtained details from Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) that implements and manages the project. Views of several members of Malaysian Nature Society (Miri Chapter) who have volunteered in constructing the community trail there were also gathered. Among those interviewed was the chapter’s chairman, Musa Musbah, who is also vice chairman of the Special Park Committee.

“So far, the public and corporations here have been very responsive. For the ‘Bring Back Rainforest Development Plan’ from March alone we have Naim Cendera collaborating with us in planting 60 trees, Sarawak Tourism Board in conjunction with Borneo Jazz Festival in May and last month Dayang Enterprise and Miri City Council collaborated in planting 100 trees,” the SFC statement stated.

Other corporations like Sarawak Shell also responded to the ‘Tree Adoption Programme’ of RM50,000 per plot (whereby22 trees can be planted) for corporations, while individual sponsorship per tree is RM3,000. The sponsor’s name will be placed next to the tree.

Support from non-governmental organisations too is very encouraging and among those that have come forward are MNS Miri and Piasau Camp Nature Park Society – both ardent advocators of the nature reserve.

Yesterday, 30 MNS members led by Musa constructed the community dirt trail while over 100 society members led by Karambir Singh did similar trail last Saturday.

The 800-metre trail is part of facilities which the public can volunteer to set up and later incorporate other facilities like benches, shades, bridges and flower gardens.

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