Posted by: ulumuda | August 11, 2008

Maintain ban on catchment heli-logging(The Star-14 Julai 08)

By SIRA HABIBU

KEDAH’s controversial proposal to embark on heli-logging activities in water catchment areas have prompted the revival of the Friends of Ulu Muda II (FoUM II) movement.

FoUM II, comprising 17 non-governmental organisations, was revived to protect the catchments within the 160,000 ha forest reserves in the state.

The movement was formed in 2002 to protest heli-logging plans proposed by the previous administration and dissolved after the Federal Government imposed a ban on logging in the Ulu Muda reserves in 2003.

Mohd Nizam Mahshar of FoUM II secretariat said they were appalled that the state government was even thinking of logging in the area.

“The Detailed Environment Impact Assessment for the heli-logging established in 2003 that the proposed extensive road network totalling 404km would result in the clearing of more than four million trees,” he said in Alor Star recently.

“We want the Federal Government ruling on March 18, 2003, banning logging at Ulu Muda re-serves, to be upheld. There should be zero logging in the area,” he said.

The movement also proposed that the Ulu Muda forest reserves be gazetted as a state or national park and called for the setting up of an Ulu Muda Trust Fund.

“The Federal Government should also keep the promise made in 2003 to compensate the Kedah Government for not logging in the area.

“Beneficiaries of water sourced from Ulu Muda should contribute to this fund. A committee comprising representatives from state and federal agencies, the private sector, farmers and NGOs should be formed to ensure the funds are effectively used to protect the catchments, “ he added.

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