Monday, 5 February 2018

BORNEO: How do we save our environment?

Unrestricted land clearing
Irresponsible waste disposals

“When I was young, after it rained, my house would be swarmed by millions of frogs, big and small. Ii was like a plague of Egypt. Nowadays, I have to search thoroughly, leaving no stone unturned, just to find a few small frogs…”
“That’s because the government didn’t stop the developer from clearing and filling wetlands. To them, wetlands are wastelands. How many local and endemic species, which might be unique and endangered, will be lost forever…”
“They cut timber as if it were grass, the river polluted, the plains are flooded, and the weather patterns are changing…”
                                                From THE EURASIANS Chapter 49 page 215

Anyway, please refer to my previous blog; Borneo: Rape of the Environment

A visitor from Canada told me that he should have heeded the advice of his friend 10 years ago; coming to Borneo at that time. According to him, it was one of the most beautiful places on earth! He told me this is his first visit to Borneo, while his friend, the second visit. His friend was very disappointed; as the beauty of this place he once admired were scarred. 

The Borneo environment is facing deterioration at alarming rates. Iconic species of wildlife such as the orangutans and pygmy elephants are facing extinction. Scientists are warning that these animals population are dwindling fast. Just recently, the pygmy rhino of Borneo had been officially declared extinct! Unrestricted land clearings in the name of development were a norm nowadays. Water are polluted not only by the oil palm plantations but by irresponsible waste disposal (plastic especially) made by ordinary citizens. 

How long will this last?

Remember; these problems we now face in Borneo are also the problems of the international communities. Planet earth is like a small room packed with people; humid and hot. Then one person at the remote corner started to smoke cigar. Very soon all the people inside this room will suffocate if this one person is not stop from smoking. The same thing with our precious planet; it is a collective responsibility of everybody to ensure the Borneo governments toe the line and not simply do as they please. 

Plastics chocking our ecology
How do we stop or reduce the threat to our environment? One way I can think of is by visiting this island in droves. The more visitors or tourists come to Borneo, the more the governments are compelled to be more responsible and sensible towards their environment. Who knows, they will come to their senses and start seeing the ecology of Borneo as assets worth protecting. After all, it was the tourists who alerted the international media about a destructive development happening on the fragile island of Sipadan; an underwater paradise in Borneo way back in 2006. After the highlight was made, the government put a stop to that project. If it were the locals who made noise, the government will simply ignore them.


1 comment:

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