India ‘will Sell’ only Electric Cars

India ‘will Sell’ only Electric Cars

India is known for many things, but a commitment to environmentalism tends not to be among them. The country has some of the world’s most polluted cities, wildlife crime remains rampant in the land, and natural habitats around the subcontinent have been shrinking alarmingly. Then again, some things are changing…

Massive Development in Johor raises Environmental Concerns

Massive Development in Johor raises Environmental Concerns

Forest City. The name sounds innocuous enough. What could be wrong about a city with a forest? Quite a lot, it seems. China’s Country Garden Holdings Co Ltd is developing Forest City, an RM176 billion mixed-use mega project on four reclaimed islands in Iskandar in the Johor Strait. Built over the next two decades…

Let rich Nations pay poor Ones for Protecting Forests

Let rich Nations pay poor Ones for Protecting Forests

One of the facts of conservation is that the more prosperous a society is, the more likely it is to protect its natural environment. Conversely, less developed nations are prone to exploiting and destroying theirs in their drive to more prosperity. The problem, of course, is that much, if not most,…

Palm Oil Buyers Beware! WWF’s latest Scores on Companies are In

Palm Oil Buyers Beware! WWF’s latest Scores on Companies are In

The results are in and they are so-so. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has released its latest Palm Oil Buyers’ Scorecard, on which it has evaluated the performance of numerous companies worldwide based on how well they have done on fulfilling their pledged commitment to buying and using…

Banking on the Death of Forests

Banking on the Death of Forests

Many banks treat forests as exploitable resources; so much so that they are behind massive deforestation across Indonesia and Malaysia. By financing companies that cut down forests for profit, the banks are key drivers of forest loss in these two countries, and farther afield. This is according to the US-based…

Climate Change will Cost us … a Lot

Climate Change will Cost us … a Lot

Despite all the projected gloom and doom, climate change remains an abstract concept for many people, especially in tropical countries like Malaysia. The weather has always been pretty hot so what’s another degree Celsius or two, right? Wrong. Global warming is going to get personal – and not in the…

Penalized Palm Oil Giant feels like ‘a Naughty Child’ and Acts like One

Penalized Palm Oil Giant feels like ‘a Naughty Child’ and Acts like One

In a recent ruling the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) has stripped Malaysia’s IOI Group, a leading global producer of palm oil, of its green certification. The reason: several of the conglomerate’s subsidiaries were found to have  been engaging in environmentally harmful slash-and-burn destruction of forests and peatlands in Indonesia. In…

Felda wants green Seal of Approval withdrawn from its Malaysian Mills

Felda wants green Seal of Approval withdrawn from its Malaysian Mills

Malaysia’s Felda Group, the state-owned commodities company which is one of the world’s largest palm oil plantation operators, has long been positioning itself as a leader in sustainable agribusiness practices. Now, however, the group has asked that Roundtable Sustainable Palm Oil Principles and Criteria certificates, which grant a badge of…

Air Pollution Makes us Worse at Work

Air Pollution Makes us Worse at Work

The health effects of air pollution have been well documented. Depending on its intensity and the length of your exposure to it, air pollution can trigger or exacerbate cardiovascular diseases, respiratory illnesses, metabolic malfunctions and a variety of other ailments. All this we’ve long known. Here’s something you may not…

RM40 Trillion: the Costs of Climate Change for Malaysia

RM40 Trillion: the Costs of Climate Change for Malaysia

If you think the current heat wave has made the temperature barely bearable outdoors, wait until global warming really starts turning up the thermostat. Average temperatures in Malaysia may rise by up to 3.1 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. That’s a terrifying prospect, yes, but even a…

Green Group Dismisses Palm Oil Company’s Claims

Green Group Dismisses Palm Oil Company’s Claims

First came the accusations, now comes the rebuttal. The accusations: In an op-ed published recently in The Borneo Post, BLD Plantation Bhd, which has come in for flak from Malaysian environmentalists for clearing large tracts of peatland for oil palm plantations near Sibu in Sarawak, lashed out at some of those…

Kota Kinabalu’s Mayor wants Shopping Malls to go Cleaner and Greener

Kota Kinabalu’s Mayor wants Shopping Malls to go Cleaner and Greener

Shopping malls are notorious worldwide for generating large amounts of waste, but if Kota Kinabalu’s mayor Yeo Boon Hai has his way, those in Sabah’s capital will become more environmentally friendly. The mayor has called on local shopping complexes to go greener by recycling more and adopting Effective Micro-organism Activated Solution…

Malaysia’s Biodiesel Conundrum

Malaysia’s Biodiesel Conundrum

Here is a bit of a conundrum: Biodiesel is a far cleaner alternative than traditional fossil fuels, and Malaysia is working on boosting its biodiesel output. So that’s good news, right? Not so fast. The problem is that much of that biodiesel will come from palm oil obtained from plantations…

TPP Could Well Prove to be a ‘Disaster’ for the Environment

TPP Could Well Prove to be a ‘Disaster’ for the Environment

The Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (TPP) may well be good for Malaysia’s economy, but it will do little to protect the country’s environment. So says a new study published by the research institute Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). In the study, “Bait-and-Switch: The Trans-Pacific Partnership’s Promised Environmental Protections Do Not…