Johor sets up permanent panel to handle pollution

In Pasir Gudang, thousands of residents were affected by air pollution problems. (Bernama pic)

JOHOR BAHRU: The state government has announced the setting up of a permanent committee on environment to deal with pollution problems more effectively.

Tan Chen Choon, the state executive councillor for local government, urban wellbeing and environment, said the committee would focus on three main types of pollution control, namely water pollution, air pollution and waste management, Bernama reported.

“The main objective of this committee is to address pollution issues in Johor through monitoring and enforcement on environmental matters. Apart from that, the committee will coordinate actions between agencies through their respective jurisdictions so that integrated action can be taken,” he said in a statement here.

In recent months pollution problems have dominated headlines as thousands of residents in Johor were affected by air pollution in Pasir Gudang and toxic waste dumping in Sungai Kim Kim.

Tan said he would chair the committee, with members comprising representatives of the various agencies.

He said so far there were 25 agencies and departments involved, but the full list of the committee would be announced after it has been finalised.

The involvement of various agencies in the committee is crucial because the pollution issue should not be treated in “silo”, he added.

He said the cause and form of pollution are diverse and require intelligent and effective integrated action for the sake of the people’s well-being.