Perak’s About-Face on Plastic Ban is a Shame

Perak’s About-Face on Plastic Ban is a Shame

Malaysians are among the world’s biggest per-capita producers of plastic waste. The country’s residents generate some 4,000 metric tons of plastic waste every single day, according to a waste management specialist. Much of that waste ends up clogging steams and rivers, as well as befouling streets and landscapes around the…

Let Puntung’s Death be a Lesson

Let Puntung’s Death be a Lesson

To her keepers, Puntung, one of Malaysia’s last three Sumatran rhinos, was a precious animal beloved for her gentle nature. To animal lovers across the country and farther afield, she was no less precious: she was one of her species’ very last Mohicans in Malaysia. Her loss has dealt a…

Lasah can’t be Doing that well in LEA

Lasah can’t be Doing that well in LEA

If you ask Malaysian authorities, Lasah the elephant is well fed, well kept and well and truly happy at the Langkawi Elephant Adventures (LEA) amusement park on Langkawi island in Kedah, where he has been kept for years for the amusement of visitors. Recently, government-appointed wildlife officials and animal experts tasked with investigating…

Let’s get Young Malaysians to Care more about the Environment

Let’s get Young Malaysians to Care more about the Environment

In increasingly prosperous countries like Malaysia, people have been flocking to urban areas where they seek higher standards of living. In tandem, formerly rural towns are too becoming increasingly urbanized. Is that a good thing? That depends on how you look at it. Many young people in urban areas around the country…

Malaysian Officials must Stay Vigilant in the Face of rampant Trafficking

Malaysian Officials must Stay Vigilant in the Face of rampant Trafficking

Malaysia is a major gateway for international wildlife traffickers into Southeast Asia. We’ve long known that, of course, but just in case here is a reminder: The country, which boasts one of the most biodiverse but also most threatened environments on the planet, is “the world’s paramount ivory transit country, with its ports serving…

Let’s Save our Rivers … from Ourselves

Let’s Save our Rivers … from Ourselves

The health of many a Malaysian river is questionable, but it doesn’t get much worse than this: Sungai Tebrau in Johor has become so badly polluted that all marine life, save for a few resilient species of fish, has gone practically extinct in it. The cause of the pollution: the rampant…

Let’s Let our Corals Save Themselves

Let’s Let our Corals Save Themselves

When it comes to corals in tropical waters, good news is hard to come by. Battered by global warming and pollution, these fragile creatures, and their ecosystems, are increasingly under threat of mass bleaching worldwide. Australia’s famed Great Barrier Reef may be doomed, and Malaysia’s own stunningly beautiful reefs, which are…

Stop befouling the Cameron Highlands

Stop befouling the Cameron Highlands

It’s easy to wax lyrical about the Cameron Highlands in Pahang. They are among Malaysia’s most picturesque spots, and travel writers routinely trot out superlatives and poetic imagery to describe the mountainous area’s natural wonders. “From your first lungful of fragrant highland air, sweat and stress evaporate,” notes Lonely Planet. “In Malaysia’s largest hill-station area, the…

Protect Sharks and Rays in Sabah

Protect Sharks and Rays in Sabah

Better protecting some species of sharks and stingrays is a must in Sabah if the state is to ensure their survival in its waters. Encouragingly, several marine and shark experts realize this and have recommended adding several species of shark to the state’s Fisheries Act as endangered species. The protected shark species,…

Time to get Tough on Animal Trafficking

Time to get Tough on Animal Trafficking

When even seasoned experts are taken aback by the scale of wildlife trafficking across Malaysia, you know we’re in trouble. Yet taken aback experts are at TRAFFIC, an international anti-trafficking watchdog. And rightfully so. Recent arrests of several wildlife traffickers by Malaysian authorities have provided further evidence (not that any more was…

The Mass Bleaching of Corals globally may be Inevitable. We must Act Now

The Mass Bleaching of Corals globally may be Inevitable. We must Act Now

If you want to see the future of fragile marine environments being battered by climate change, look no further than Australia’s world-famous Great Barrier Reef. Last year the corals at the reef underwent an unprecedented mass bleaching episode, which killed off or visibly damaged huge swathes of coral for hundreds of miles….

Perhilitan says Lasah is ‘doing Fine.’ Make of That what you Will

Perhilitan says Lasah is ‘doing Fine.’ Make of That what you Will

Ask animal lovers, and Lasah, a 37-year-old elephant, has endured so much abuse and neglect for years that he needs to be freed from the Langkawi Elephant Adventures Park. The pachyderm has been kept in chains most of the time and used in elephant rides in the rest. Ask management at the park, however,…

Spare a thought for the little Sparrows

Spare a thought for the little Sparrows

Sparrows are everywhere. There they hop and chirp here and there, in parks, on streets and at city squares…. Or maybe not. The bubbly little birds did use to be ubiquitous, but house sparrows have gone increasingly AWOL in recent years from urban landscapes in India and elsewhere, including Malaysia. The cause: habitat loss in ever denser…

Save Sabah from losing its Biodiversity

Save Sabah from losing its Biodiversity

Sabah is a hotspot of biodiversity, but the state is losing much of that very biodiversity, and fast. In fact, Sabah’s wildlife is already a mere shadow of its former self because of destructive human activities. Many local politicians openly acknowledge that much. Among them is Pang Nyuk Ming, assistant…

Killing Orangutans for their Meat is an Appalling Crime

Killing Orangutans for their Meat is an Appalling Crime

Orangutans in Borneo are critically endangered, suffering as they do from a variety of existential challenges. The grave challenges they face in the wild include habitat loss, forest fragmentation, encroaching development and the exotic wildlife trade. Now you can add another threat to that list: being hunted for their meat. Yes, you’ve read that right. According…