World Kudos For Malaysia In Keeping Sabah Coal-Free

Posted on February 18, 2011. Filed under: International Solidarity |

-The Star-

(Bernama) — Malaysia has received a pat on the back from the international community for its decision not to use coal to generate energy in Sabah, a move that will open the doors to clean power options in the state.

World Bank Chief Technical Specialist for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Prof Daniel M. Kammen said that by cancelling a proposed coal-powered plant in favour of sustainable energy options, Malaysia had opted to invest in a healthy economy and environment for Sabah.

“This is a turning point that should bring deserved praise and partnerships to Malaysia at the upcoming climate conference in Durban, South Africa.

“I’m truly thrilled by the efforts of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman and for their leadership in directing the course of the nation and state towards a diverse mixture of energy resources.

“This will help stabilise energy costs, bring new entrepreneurs into the energy field, create job growth and cut local environmental impact and global greenhouse gas emissions growth,” he said in a statement on Friday.

Green SURF (Sabah Unite to Re-Power the Future) had commissioned Kammen to prepare an energy options report for Sabah in his capacity as Professor of Energy at the University of California in Berkeley.

Energy and environmental victories often don’t get the attention that negative events do, but here is a case where a collaborative set of environmental groups led by Green SURF worked with elected officials to hold dialogues with the public, and to bring critically needed technical materials such as the energy options report we produced to decision makers.

“I am thrilled to have been able to work with the people of Sabah on this victory, and look forward to watching the international community learn from Sabah s triumph of planning and partnership, he said.

World Land Trust Chief Executive Officer and Founder John Burton congratulated the government on making a rational decision that will have major benefits for all.

It is good that they listened to public opinion and shows a genuine commitment to the environment, Burton said.

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