Category Archives: Environmental Issues

WWF discovers new animal and plant species in Borneo

Newly discovered Borneo tree frog (Rhacophorus gadingensis).I came across this article about new animal and plant species that they found in Borneo. Wildlife experts says they have discovered at least 52 new species of animals and plants between July 2005 and September 2006 on th island of Borneo.

Newly discovered Borneo tree frog (Rhacophorus gadingensis).
© Alexander Haas

According to a report compiled by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF),the new species discovered include 30 unique fish species, two tree frog species, 16 ginger species, three tree species and one large-leafed plan species.

Stuart Chapman, WWF International Coordinator of the Heart of Borneo Program, said that the “more we look the more we find” on Borneo. “These discoveries reaffirm Borneo’s position as one of the most important centers of biodiversity in the world”.

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© WWF-Canon / Martin HARVEY, © WWF / Sylvia Jane YORATH, © WWF-Canon / Alain COMPOST, © WWF-Canon / Gerald S. CUBITT, © WWF-Canon / Michel TERRETTAZ, © Menno Schilthuizen

Read more from the WWF official site

More about the Heart of Borneo Forest

Eyesore views at Mount Kinabalu

See it for yourself. Thank you Ganesh from Singapore with all these pics. I really appreciate your effort. The photos was taken just less than a week ago.

Mount Kinabalu The abandoned projects just above Layang-layang Hut.

Mount Kinabalu
See all the damage? Looks like a rubbish dump to me.
Mount Kinabalu
Caused by one of the seven human deadly sins – GREED.

Mount Kinabalu This is the Mesilau Route -Summit Trail junction. I was really sad when I saw this.

Mount Kinabalu

Hopefully you will not be the one who do this.

Mount Kinabalu Mesilau-Summit Trail junction, where you can see all those mess.

If you are planning to climb Mount Kinabalu soon, try to take some photos of this place. Email me the photos and I will put on this blog so that we can share with adventure lovers and travelers around the world. Spread out the message of how greedy people can do to our Mother Earth. Hopefully, if our voices is loud enough, THEY can hear us and repair all the damages that has been done.

Thanks Ganesh for your photos! I put a watermark of your email on every pics!

Still a sad news for Mount Kinabalu

This article was adapted from the local newspaper The Borneo Post, Thursday, June 22, 2006.

At last, the Chief Minister of Sabah has come out with a very late but good decision: ‘Mount Kinabalu project off’, it was on the first page headline of local newspaper, The Borneo Post. The area for RM9 million restaurant-resthouse project in World Heritage Site is totally scrapped. The Chief Minister said such development in the gazetted as a World Heritage Site, or any ecologically sensitive locations is strongly dissallowed.He said that it is an important area and the state government would dissallow any type of development which could destroy the environment there.

“The project involves rock blasting for piling purposes and we cannot allow this to happen within the World Heritage location. The project has been scrapped following discussion with the other ministries and we will give Federal Development Department Sabah (JPPS) ample time to clean up the debris, and hopefully the place will return to its original form,” he said. Asked about the situation in the area, he said that according to the JPPS report, it is “not serious”.

“We were told that the existing resthouse such as Laban Rata could not support the number of climbers wishing to scale Mount Kinabalu but we cannot allow anymore development there. If there is a need, then Sabah Park should find another location”, he said.”When we heard that there was rock blasting involved, we had to stop the project,” he said, referring to the resthouse-cum-restaurant project at Layang-Layang, a project funded by the Federal Tourism Ministry and supervised by JPPS to provide climbers with a place to rest and eat before continuing their journey. It was scheduled to be completed in May last year.

However, the previous contractor was unable to complete the project within the stipulated period and the contract was terminated. JPPS said they have opened a new tender for it.

My two cents: Malaysian style of thinking: Do first, think later… And look what happened? The damage has been done.

Sad news for Mount Kinabalu

This post was adapted from a local newspaper, The Borneo Post, June 13, 2006.

The Federal Development Department Sabah (JPPS) is being blamed for the abrupt abandonent of the RM4.35 million restaurant and resthouse project along the Mount Kinabalu Summit Trail. The Sabah state Government is pointing the finger at the JPPS for answer to the controversial high altitude project which has not been completed on time. The Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister also said the State Government is aware of the project being abandoned.

My two cents: What a waste of money!. Greed.The authority that approved the project is the one should be blamed. This is what a typical Malaysian do. They do first, and think later…

The project has become an eyesore at 2,727 meters asl, at the junction of the Summit Trail and Mesilau Trail, just above Carson’s Camp (Layang-Layang Hut). It was scheduled to start on June 30, 2003 and completed by May 1 last year. The contractor apparently abandoned it and left leaving a trail of debris at the site including piles of rocks, sand, iron bars and building materials.

My two cents: Poor Mount Kinabalu. No more beauty of a Upper montane/chestnut forest at 2,727 meters asl. If you want to know what I mean, go and see it for yourself.

The reason, according to the contractor was that they could not complete the job due to the cost of transporting materials via as well as the inability of his workers to cope with the harsh weather conditions on the mountain. It was also understood that JPPS officials had met with Chief Minister of Sabah over the abandoned project that is believed to have been re-tendered for a price of about RM9 million.

My two cents: I told you! They only think after they did something. And re-tendering the project for RM9 million? Another waste of money. The money can be used for upgrading the infrastructure and facilities of most of the poor interior part of Sabah. Leave Mount Kinabalu alone.

Former Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry Permanent Secretary said that there is no need for such a building there. He also questioned if putting up such structures with the use of dynamite blasting was in compliance with the World Heritage Site guidelines.

My two cents: I would not be surprised if UNESCO stripped out Mount Kinabalu as one of the reknown World Heritage Site!

Sabah Environmental Protection Association (SEPA) President said the association feared that officials who had approved the project were putting commercial viability ahead of environmental conditions.

My two cents: Yes, I agree. Greed is a good term.