LAST_UPDATESat, 21 Jul 2018 4pm

12 NGOs Urge Gov't To Permanently Halt ECRL Project

BENTONG -- A total of 12 NGOs today urged the Pakatan Harapan government to permanently halt the construction of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project which stretches from the Klang Valley to the East Coast, due to its serious impact on the environment.

Pertubuhan Pelindung Khazanah Alam Malaysia (Peka) president Puan Sri Shariffa Sabrina Syed Akil said it would also pose a great risk to wildlife due to habitat loss.

"The 600-km-long rail project will not only be a burden due to the large debt it puts the people in but at the same time, it will affect over 12 forest reserves located along the route.

"According to the (project) consultant's own Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report, the initial alignment would have involved clearing over 2,000 hectares of forests, causing serious fragmentation.

"After field studies were conducted again, only 357 hectares of permanent forest reserves were involved, but it still does not help solve the problem," she told reporters after visiting the ECRL's construction site at KM55.2 of the Kuala Lumpur-Karak Highway here today.

Also present were leaders from other NGOs such as Malaysia Nature Society, Malaysia Environment NGO, Sahabat Alam Malaysia, Malaysia Animal Association, Hiking and Camping Around Malaysia (Hacam) and Pertubuhan Rakan Alam Sekitar Malaysia.