Johor Baru—Malaysia Nature Society, an environmental group, urges the government to seek foreign help to locate the root cause of the chemical pollution that has affected residents of Pasir Gudang in the past weeks.
Vincent Chow, the vice president of the organisation, says pollution detectors did not seem to have found the reason schoolchildren in Pasir Gudang have reportedly been suffering from breathing problems.
Chow says the government is perhaps using “old or obsolete equipment” and that the standard operating procedure for such incidents is flawed.
The Star daily paper reports that he says Malaysia should seek foreign help from the United Nations or Singapore since they have the relevant expertise and equipment.
Other security agents urges the government to deploy a Hazardous Plume Dispersal Modelling Unit to Pasir Gudang to better address the pollution source. Malaysia, however, does not have such costly equipment.
On the other hand, the chairman of the Malaysian Parliamentary Select Committee, the Member of Parliament Hassan Abdul Karim says chemical companies, factories and non-governmental organisations should come forward and provide gas detectors at schools around Pasir Gudang.
In the latest incident on June 20, several educational institutions shut down for three days upon reports of breathing difficulties among students.
Despite the repeated incidents of respiratory problems among schoolchildren, Malaysian Minister of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Yeo Bee Yin says the government will not seek foreign help to address the stagnant pollution problem.
Yeo said the affected schools and the current victims “have no geographical correlation” according to government data checks./TISG
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