December 28, 2010
Don’t destroy forest reserve to grow oil palm
THE Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) Selangor Branch is dismayed to learn of the
Selangor Agricultural Development Corporation (PKPS) proposal to convert the remaining peat forest in the Kuala
Langat South (KLS) forest reserve to oil palm.
Although PKPS reported that the forest reserve does not have valuable hardwood and
consists mostly of trees from the macaranga genus, independent scientific reports note that the forest reserve
retains a rich diversity of native species, including important commercial trees and notable timber species such
as Kempas (Koompasia malaccensis), Meranti Bakau (Shorea rugosa) and Ramin (Gonystylus bancanus).
MNS notes that scientists from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia doing research in
Kuala Langat South found that the forest was extremely rich in species, with a high potential for finding insect
and animal species that have never before been recorded in Malaysia and some which were entirely new to
Scientific expeditions in recent weeks further produced evidence of the presence
of sunbears and panthers in the Kuala Langat South Forest Reserve.
In addition, peat forests such as Kuala Langat South provide valuable ecological
services, such as maintaining freshwater quality, hydrological integrity, and carbon storage and
The National Conservation Strategy also notes that the KLS forest reserve plays an
important role in flood mitigation.
Local and indigenous communities also depend on peatlands for their livelihood.
Any human influence on the Kuala Langat South Forest Reserve, therefore, can affect its form and
For the above reasons, we urge the Selangor State Government to conserve the KLS
forest reserve for present and future generations.
Chairman, MNS (Selangor Branch) - The Star