Sarawak willing to share knowledge in hydro-power generation

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Sarawak willing to share knowledge in hydro-power generation

Sarawak willing to share knowledge in hydro-power generation

Monday, November 21, 2011
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Taib -- "Sarawak had to ensure minimal disruption to the environment."

KUCHING: Sarawak is willing to share its experiences and challenges in tackling problems related to the development of hydro-power generation, Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud said Monday.


Taib, who is also Resource Planning and Environment Minister, said that in the case of Sarawak, the government had to tackle the engineering aspect and ensure minimal disruption to the natural environment, besides providing a better alternative way of life to resettle the people away from the dam projects.


"We are the younger partner in this business of sharing (experiences) ... Sarawak will be hosting the hydro-power development congress sometime next year to enable leading players in the industry to share their knowledge and challenges faced globally in promoting sustainable growth," he told reporters after opening the Regional Symposium on Engineering and Technology 2011 here.


The three-day symposium, which ends on Wednesday, is being attended by delegates from Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia.


Taib said it was important that the state government conducted proactive discussions with the locals, who appreciate and still cling to the values of their old legacy, as part of its approach to ensure long-term sustainable growth through green engineering and technology.


In the development of the 2,400MW-capacity Bakun dam, he said, the state authorities had also managed to save thousands of species of flora and fauna in the area submerged.


There was a need to look into the possibility of utilising the huge volume of rain water in the development of Sarawak's river system as part of efforts to cope with global climate change and environmental conservation, he said.


Symposium chairperson Prof Dr Rosnah Mohd Yusof said Sarawak was chosen as the venue because of the state's strong commitment to renewable energy, which was supported by the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy initiative.


She said the Asia-Pacific region, where a large part of the world's industrial activity had shifted, had seen tremendous growth in the last few years.


The need to address the current concerns on the environment was timely and appropriate in view of the rapid urbanisation and industrialisation, involving intensive use of resources as well as climate change that had exerted considerable environmental pressure and socio-economic risks, she added.