Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Collaboration on enhancing turtle conservation and eco-tourism in Sarawak

KUCHING: Sarawak Energy Berhad (SEB) has formalised an agreement with Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) to work in partnership to enhance the latter’s turtle conservation programme and promote eco-tourism at turtle landing sites Tanjung Datu National Park, Pulau Talang-Talang Besar and Pulau Talang-Talang Kechil.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed at Menara Sarawak Energy yesterday in the presence of Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg to confirm SEB’s intent to provide the sanctuaries with green energy via a solar centralised system.

The MoU includes other areas of cooperation with SFC such as to allow SEB to evaluate new solar technologies for potential applications at remote and rural areas.

Signing the MoU on behalf of SEB was its group chief executive officer Sharbini Suhaili while SFC was represented by its chief executive officer Wong Ting Chung.

Serving as witnesses to the MoU were SEB executive vice-president for Corporate Services Aisah Eden and SFC head of Protected Areas and Biodiversity Conservation Oswald Bracken Tisen.

Commenting on the collaboration, Sharbini in a statement said sustainability underpinned SEB’s business, operations and interactions with the community.

“As a responsible corporate citizen, SEB is pleased to be able to help provide electricity to Tanjung Datu National Park and the two turtle islands of Pulau Talang-Talang Besar and Pulau Talang-Talang Kechil by providing a green source of energy free from carbon emission to these protected areas, replacing noisy diesel generators making it more conducive for turtle conservation.”

SEB will connect Tanjung Datu National Park with 10kW of solar power, Pulau Talang-Taang Besar with 8kW and Pulau Talang-Talang Kechil with 6kW. The three turtle sanctuaries currently use diesel generators with restricted hours of operation that require high maintenance costs.

It will also train the parks’ rangers on the operation and maintenance of the system. The technical team will continue to attend to breakdowns, do periodical inspection and scheduled maintenance as required.

Meanwhile, Wong said SFC was fortunate to have SEB as a partner, first in biodiversity conservation and now in eco-tourism development as exemplified by this joint undertaking at Talang Satang National Park.