Indonesia and Malaysia to set new Green Standards for Palm Oil

Indonesia and Malaysia to set new Green Standards for Palm Oil

More than a month after they started burning, Indonesian forest fires that caused a crippling haze epidemic are still raging strong.  The record-breaking burn is due largely to palm oil practices that dry out, expose and otherwise make the peatland beneath them extremely susceptible to fires.  As a result of…

Malaysian Politics: in Need of Refocus

Malaysian Politics: in Need of Refocus

At present, Malaysia finds itself in dire straits.  Prime Minister Najib Razak is at the center of an international scandal involving his alleged embezzlement of $700 million.  Two enormous protests have resulted (one anti-government and one pro-Malaysian pride) which have divided the country and brought race politics into the foreground. …

Biodiversity in Malaysia to get More Help from Government

Biodiversity in Malaysia to get More Help from Government

Malaysia’s national biodiversity policy is currently being revised to include further consideration for the country’s delicate environment.  The opportunity is a great one – the vital document hasn’t been reviewed in decades, and it could do more to protect Malaysia’s plant and animal life. On paper, biodiversity in Malaysia has…

Giant Pandas too Expensive for Malaysia?

Giant Pandas too Expensive for Malaysia?

Kuala Lumpur Zoo’s two giant pandas have just had a baby.  They’ve only been in Malaysia 15 months, which makes their coupling the fastest panda birth ever achieved in captivity. The occasion was cause for much celebration, but comes with a high price tag.  The pandas are on loan from…

Agreements and Arguments Over Indonesian Fires

Agreements and Arguments Over Indonesian Fires

Because haze in Indonesia often blows over to become haze in Malaysia, both countries often suffer from Indonesian fires.  It is for this reason that Malaysia’s Natural Resources and Environment Minister will soon be meeting with his Indonesian counterpart to discuss the matter of transboundary haze pollution. The Malaysian environmental…

Will Indonesia Change After This Year’s Fires?

Will Indonesia Change After This Year’s Fires?

As fires continue to rage through Indonesia and the haze they produce chokes Singapore, Malaysia and neighboring countries, people are looking for answers.  When will it stop?  What is Indonesia doing about it?  Will it happen again next year?  Indonesia has been promising for years to step up security –…

1MDB Now Under Investigation by Six Countries

1MDB Now Under Investigation by Six Countries

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is at the center of a scandal involving what could be billions of dollars, and the case has blown up into a multinational episode of epic proportion. The case of Najib’s allegedly smuggling well over $700 million of government money into his personal accounts through…

Malaysian State Wises up to Poisonous Bauxite Mining

Malaysian State Wises up to Poisonous Bauxite Mining

Heeding reports of devastating pollution and lending an ear to local unrest, The Malaysian state of Terengganu has frozen all new applications for bauxite mining. “So far we have decided to freeze [applications] and not give permission to any party that wants to mine bauxite, although some of them are…

Sarawak Raids 240 Companies Linked to Illegal Logging in Malaysia

Sarawak Raids 240 Companies Linked to Illegal Logging in Malaysia

A recent sizing-up of illegal logging in Malaysia revealed that the Forest Department of Sarawak conducted 240 raids, confiscated 12,000 cubic meters of timber and submitted a total of 122 investigation papers to the state government as of July this year. Much of this legal action has to do with…

Parks in Malaysia Lacking Government Attention

Parks in Malaysia Lacking Government Attention

Four beautiful parks and the iconic Malaysian city that surrounds them are fading from dignity to disrepair thanks to poor maintenance and government inaction. The riverside metropolis of Ipoh used to be one of Malaysia’s cleanest and most charming cities.  It was a prime destination for travelers and a lovely…

Blockade on Potentially Disastrous Baram Dam May be Lifted

Blockade on Potentially Disastrous Baram Dam May be Lifted

Mass flooding, environmental devastation and the displacement of countless indigenous people have characterized a hydroelectric dam campaign ramming its way through public opposition in the Malaysian state of Sarawak.  Construction of the Baram dam (the most recent of 12 proposed dams) has begun, but locals – having seen thousands of…

Kota Kinabalu Makes Headlines for More than its Majesty

Kota Kinabalu Makes Headlines for More than its Majesty

The jagged peaks of Malaysia’s Kota Kinabalu are the stuff of legends.  Iconic to its surrounding state of Sabah, the mountain is especially revered by the Kadazan Dusun people who live nearby.  Their ancestors believe that Kinabalu rises to the heavens, making it the final resting place for those who…