Tuesday, September 22

Forest Dept all for win-win scenario in carbon trading

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Azahari Omar

KUCHING: Carbon trading is a potential form of revenue for the state from the mere existence of forests, said State Forest Department (Licence For Planted Forest Division) assistant director Azahari Omar.

“In carbon trading, we maintain our forests and we get revenue from developed countries that are willing to pay for us to keep our forests.

“That means we don’t cut down the trees but let them grow,” he told thesundaypost after the Forest Landscape Restoration programme co-hosted by Japan-Malaysia Association (JMA), Forest Department Sarawak and Unimas and supported by Kinoshita Group at Gunung Apeng National Park, Serian yesterday.

Azahari, who was representing State Forest director Hamden Mohammad, carbon trading would not only provide revenue but also allow future generations to still see the forests.

“We do hope that carbon trading will take off successfully so that it will benefit local communities,” he said.

Azahari explained that Gunung Apeng National Park, gazetted in 2016, was chosen by JMA as an area for its forest landscape restoration project and the department has been working with them since 1995.

He added that the department aims to restore the forest landscape in totally protected areas like Gunung Apeng, permanent forest estates, urban parks, private lands, quarry, mining and degraded areas.

That JMA’s tree-planting activities could bring other benefits to the local community around the national park was also pointed out.

“The community staying around the national park are involved in the tree planting. JMA is also planning to develop homestay in the villages.

“Nearby schools are also involved in tree planting. We hope that these new generations can appreciate and be proud that they still have forest areas where they live,” Azahari said.