Love Our River Campaign - How to get involved
LOVE OUR RIVER CAMPAIGN - HOW TO GET INVOLVED
The Love Our Rivers Campaign was first launched by the Department of Irrigation and Drainage Malaysia (DID) in 1993, to educate the public on the importance of rivers and the environment in our lives while consequently highlighting the critical state of pollution faced by our rivers. Malaysia has about 150 major river basins out of which close to 100 are found in the Peninsular, with the rest in Sabah and Sarawak. Some of these river systems, and industrial developments suffer from acute levels of pollution. River that flow through densely populated areas including towns and housing estates are often polluted with solid wastes and eroded soil resulting in pollution levels incapable of sustaining aquatic life let alone blockages that cause flash flood. Soil erosion caused by land development in the surrounding areas and untreated waste discharges from nearby factories further contribute to the high pollution levels. These toxic wastes not only destroy aquatic life but also the surrounding vegetation, flora and fauna due to its highly acidic levels.The campaign was successful in meeting some of the targets and objectives; thus more needs to be done. This year’s Love Our River Campaign, is yet another effort by DID aimed at encouraging public awareness, empathy and care towards our rivers and the concerted efforts undertaken to clean our rivers nationwide. Apart from the continuous educational and awareness programs, this year’s campaign which included River Cleaning, River Beautification, Pollution Rehabilitation, River Adoption and Education Programs targets individuals, corporate bodies and the public sector.
River Cleaning Programme
From the Klang River, and average of 50-60 tons of rubbish ( or solid waste ) is collected daily. After a rainy day, its is not surprising to gather 80 tons of rubbish from the rubbish traps along the Klang River and its tributaries. Situations where by floating rubbish are found in river throughout the country in especially common in densely populated areas such as towns and cities. The river cleaning programs contributes to the solving of the problem of solid waste from development areas. Among the short-term measures proposed are The National Gotong-Royong Week and the construction of appropriate rubbish traps in strategic location along rivers and monsoon drains. The National Gotong-Royong Week is targeted to commence early next year. We urge the whole nation, members of the federal and state government departments and agencies, the corporate sector, village development committees, individuals, factory owners and schools, to volunteer their participation and make this event a resounding success.
River Beautification Programme
Clean, beautiful rivers create a healthy and attractive environment for recreation. The beautification of rivers should be complemented by a landscaping programme, synergistic with the natural conditions and local traditions. This will make the area a focal point, the pride and joy of the local residents, who in turn will ensure its beauty and cleanliness. Among the examples of beautification programmes that have been carried out in Malaysia are the Sarawak ; The bakau forest area in Bakau Tinggi , Terengganu ; the ‘kampungs’ in Sungai Raga, Kedah and Sungai Chongkak in Selangor. It is hoped that there will be more active participation from individuals and corporate sector in programmes organized within their vicinity.
Pollution Rehabilitation Programme
River pollution is caused by sediments from soil erosion, unsatisfactory treatment of sewerage, sullage water and liquid waste from factories, and untreated waste water from markets, restaurants and food stalls. Residue and sediments ( caused by soil erosion due to land development ) that flow into the Klang River amount to approximately 1 million tons a year or between 500-600 5-ton lorries a day. This not only disrupts lifeforms in rivers but also results in shallow rivers that ultimately causes flash floods. To overcome this problem, the cooperation of developers are highly sought in controlling soil erosion. The discharge of untreated sewerage into rivers further increases the level of pollution. Proper treatment of sewerage needs to be effected now and this will require the involvement and commitment of the whole nation. Liquid waste is yet another major pollution. Liquid waste is the result of waste disposal from manufacturing plants, processes from agricultural and livestock production as well as residuals from fertilizer and pesticides used in plantations and livestock farms. To curb this problem, factory owners must implement water treatment and recycling programmes that conform to industry standards or employ other methods to ensure that the effluents into river conform with the Environmental Quality Act standards enforced by the Department of Environment ( DOE ).
River Adoption Programme
The River Adoption Programme launched in 1993 was aimed at instilling a sense of responsibility through an ‘ownership status’ or river adoption by schools and local residents. This programme succeeded in creating continuous maintenance, rehabilitation and beautification of a number of rivers throughout the whole country. This year’s Love Our River Campaign hopes to see the active and proactive participation of the corporate sector to further sustain the success of the river adoption programme.
The River Adoption Programme and River Watch Programme are among the awareness programmes targeted to schools in the past. To ensure continuity of this Education Programme, The Club Pencinta Sungai, will be set up in Kedah Darul Aman by the Kedah State Education Department, whilst others are being encouraged to follow suit. In this regard, the participation of the Ministry of Education syllabus (e.g Kemahiran Hidup ) and co-curriculum of Kindergartens, schools and Institutions of Higher Learning.
Dari hulu orang bersampan,
Sambil bersampan memancing ikan,
Kalau dahulu sungailah rakan,
Mengapa kini kita abaikan.
Ikat perahu di tepi tebing,
Singgah mandi di air jeram,
Kalau dahulu berwajah bening,
Kini riaknya menjadi suram.
Nelayan menjala di tengah hari,
Rezekinya murah sebakul penuh,
Janganlah sungai kita cemari,
Kelak menjadi racun pembunuh.
Air pasang di waktu malam,
Anak desa mencari lokan,
Cintai alam jadikan amalan,
Sungaiku, Hidupku kita jayakan.
Last Updated 2017-01-09 17:19:54 by Administrator