Premier: RM5 mln approved for UTM, Land and Survey Dept research focusing on climate change, green tech

Abang Johari addressing the Landas Summit 2023 organised by JTS at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here tonight (Feb 3, 2023).

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By Karen Bong

KUCHING, Feb 3: Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg has approved RM5 million for the Land and Survey Department to establish a research chair that focuses on climate change and green energy in collaboration with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM).

In announcing this, Abang Johari urged the department to send more officers to continue doing research in various fields including multi-layered data such as in Estonia where everything is integrated into one platform.

“This morning (Feb 3), we had a meeting on setting up a special lane for ART (autonomous rapid transit) for Samarahan while the traffic light intersections are being upgraded, I was informed that there is one cable under Sarawak Energy not far from the last roundabout, which they cannot locate.

“This is because if they are not careful, the digging works can damage the cable and cause blackouts. As such, these common multi-layered data must be available so that we know the obstacles underground.

“I hope with new technology, it will ease and facilitate our work,” he said when addressing the Landas Summit 2023 organised by JTS at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here tonight.

Elaborating on the research chair, Abang Johari noted that officers’ practical experience and field work will be incorporated into the master programme.

“You will also be awarded a master’s degree which is a postgraduate qualification. So thank you UTM,” he said.

Earlier on, JTS director Datu Abdullah Julaihi informed that the initial communication between the Department and UTM on establishing the research chair has been finalised.

Abang Johari has also approved JTS’ request for extra enforcement personnel to strengthen its Enforcement Unit.

“We need more people to help in our works, especially in rural areas, to prevent any encroachment or intrusion into areas that have been surveyed,” he pointed out.

Abdullah had mentioned that enforcement tasks have become increasingly challenging with the overflow of land, sea and air infrastructure development in Sarawak, apart from the scope of operating licenses and permits to ensure Sarawak’s natural resources are efficiently regulated, including carbon storage.

“With the current tasks alone, there are more challenges as access to widespread settlements increased with the construction of new road networks and bridges.

“People tend to explore new settlements, and if not regulated, it could interfere with development planning in the future,” he said.

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan and Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian and Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Urban Development Datu Len Talif Salleh wre among those present. — DayakDaily