HAKAM Comment: What happened to the extended moratorium on bauxite mining of three months from the start of 2017 as announced by Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar in December 2016?
An excavator fills a lorry with bauxite at the stockpile area at Kuantan port in this file picture. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
KUANTAN, Feb 21 — The presence of two excavators in Kampung Jeram in Beserah here has left local residents in a quandary as they fear bauxite mining activities are taking place while the moratorium period is still on.
The People’s Movement to Stop Bauxite Pollution (Geram) chairman, Ali Akbar Othman said the villagers realised the existence of the machinery in the village yesterday evening and they were eager to get answers from the contractor today.
He said after discussing, the contractor claimed he received a letter of approval to load and clear the bauxite stockpile from the mine.
“However, a check at the site revealed several new digging sites. We also asked the contractor to show us the letter and permit which he claimed he had obtained but he said the documents are with the land owner.
“As such we want them to stop work and gave them until tomorrow to submit the documents to verify claims that approval from the authorities had been obtained,” he said when contacted here. Read more →
PETALING JAYA: They dot Kuantan and its outskirts – giant holes at places where bauxite was once mined. With the rainy season, the deep, gaping holes near housing areas and schools have become death traps for unsuspecting children who go there to play.
There are few fences and signages, if any, and these places are a “child magnet”, according to Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh. What’s worse is: nobody even knows just how many such pools there are in the Kuantan area.
On Friday, three children drowned in one such pool in Taman Sungai Karang Jaya, leading to even the Pahang Regent Tengku Mahkota Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, stepping in.
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar has also ordered the Minerals and Geoscience Department – an agency of the ministry – to find out the number of such pools there are. Read more →
Bauxite mining has become a controversial political issue in Malaysia. As the government implements a temporary ban on extracting the aluminium ore, BBC South-East Asia correspondent Jonathan Head visits the most-affected area.
Amid the monotonous dark green lines of Malaysia’s endless palm oil plantations, there are now vivid red gashes in the hills behind the east coast town of Kuantan.
These have appeared only in the past 18 months, as a frenzy of open-cast bauxite mining gripped Pahang province.
Tonnes of bauxite are being transported out of the region. It is the world’s main source of aluminium so is vital for the construction of everything from airplanes to saucepans and cooking foil.
Two children play near a bauxite mining site in Felda Bukit Goh, Kuantan. Villagers say their complaints to authorities over the pollution from mining activities have fallen on deaf ears. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Abd Halim, January 8, 2016. Small busi
Small business operators and food vendors in Bukit Goh, Pahang said rampant bauxite mining there has severely affected their business, refuting the menteri besar’s claim that locals have benefited from the industry.
Motorcycle workshop owner Suhaizam Abdul Aziz, 45, said contrary to Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob’s statement that bauxite mining generated economic activities with spin-off effects in the state, it had only brought misery for locals.
“Who benefited from it? Not locals.
“If you look at the industry closely, the money went to outsiders. Most of the lorry drivers come from outside the state. Likewise, the workers. There were some locals but the ratio is small, like 50 foreigners to four locals,” said Suhaizam. Read more →
The red sea phenomenon off Kuantan is believed to be due to bauxite ore stockpiled near Kuantan Port. Pic taken from NST Online.
KUALA LUMPUR: A team of scientists has warned that the damage to the environment from the indiscriminate and poorly regulated mining of bauxite may be so severe that the ecosystem may never recover.
The adverse health effects on the Kuantan public could be devastating, and could last for generations.
The group of 17 professionals covering a diverse array of environmental disciplines have called for the Pahang government to issue an immediate stop work order on bauxite mining in the district.
This marked the first time that a group of independent scientists had arrived at a consensus and issued a dire and comprehensive warning of the consequences of the unrestrained mining of bauxite in the state. Read more →
After coastline waters and surrounding rivers in Pahang has turned red, the Cabinet will temporarily halt bauxite mining until regulations, licensing and environmental protection can be put in place. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, January 2, 2016.
Malaysia is pushing to suspend bauxite mining due to concerns about its impact on the environment, a cabinet source said today, threatening to interrupt supply of the aluminium-making ingredient to China.
The largely unregulated industry has grown rapidly in the last two years to meet Chinese demand.
Bauxite mining was blamed for turning the waters red on a stretch of coastline and surrounding rivers in eastern peninsula Malaysia after two days of heavy rain earlier this week.
The cabinet wants to temporarily halt bauxite mining until regulations, licensing and environmental protection can be put in place, the source told Reuters today. Read more →
Kabinet memutuskan aktiviti perlombongan bauksit di Pahang dihentikan buat sementara bagi membolehkan kajian terhadap kaedah mengangkutnya dapat dibuat. – Gambar fail The Malaysian Insider, 2 Januari, 2016.
Kementerian Pengangkutan akan mengkaji semula kaedah mengangkut bauksit menerusi darat dan laut di Kuantan yang kini dibantah secara meluas penduduk di sekitar kawasan perlombongan itu, kata Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.
Menteri pengangkutan itu dilaporkan Utusan Malaysia hari ini berkata, kajian itu akan dilaksanakan susulan arahan Kabinet agar aktiviti perlombongan bauksit dihentikan buat sementara.
“Kita tahu ini satu isu yang perlu dikaji dari segi cara perlombongan yang lestari kerana kalau kita menggunakan cara sekarang, tidak selamat dan mencemar kawasan kita.
“Sebab itulah kita kaji bukan sahaja dari segi perlombongan tetapi pengangkutan juga, sebab bauksit halus ini ringan dan terbang dan menyebabkan seluruh kawasan menjadi merah,” beliau dipetik berkata. Read more →
Earlier this month when raising a petition seeking Parliament’s intervention on the issue, PKR’s Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh said an estimated 44 companies are exporting some 15 million tonnes of bauxite out of Pahang to China each month. — Reuters pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 16 — The federal government today agreed to a suggestion to temporarily suspend the export of bauxite from Pahang until proper regulations are in place to keep the industry in check.
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said he is agreeable to the suggestion made by PKR’s Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh, though he stressed that this would require the buy in from Pahang state government.
“We will meet with the state government to discuss the matter,” he said when winding up points raised during the Budget 2016 debate.
Earlier when interjecting, Fuziah stressed that Pahang’s capital city of Kuantan is suffering from heavy pollution caused by illegal mining operations that have mushroomed to meet high demand for the mineral.
She claimed that mining activities have also left a large amount of dust that has allegedly led to a spike in the number of asthma attacks and skin disease among children in the area.
Bauxite is an aluminium ore and considered the world’s main source of the metal. Read more →