THE HASANAH REPORT 2022
A waste management solution that benefits the community and the environment
Kampung Sting, with its stunning views of the Bengoh Dam, is 1 of 3 remote ecotourism villages under the Plastic-Free Community project. Sitting at an elevation of about 200m, it is also located not far from the breathtaking Pee’an and Susung Waterfalls (dubbed the Jurassic Park of Sarawak).
Head of Environment, Ivy Wong Abdullah says that millions of pieces of plastic waste are entering landfills and oceans, and this first phase of the long-term Responsible Consumption and Production Alliance project is one of the ways to address it.
Due to its remote location, waste disposal is a challenge for Kampung Sting that is not currently serviced by the local council. The nearest waste disposal bin is a 15 minute walk downhill and then another 15 minute boat ride away at the Bengoh Dam area. Previously, rubbish collection sites were also at risk of becoming mosquito breeding grounds.
According to Green Science and Technology Association Malaysia’s (GSTAM) Environmental Executive, Milliana Anak Christopher Kerry, each boat ride costs RM25 on top of being time consuming. Hence at times, villagers resort to burning the rubbish instead.
Today, community member Angin Anak Bengem says he is now aware of the health and environmental harms of burning waste, especially plastic.
Since GSTAM’s programme, open burning has reduced significantly — from 10 households that used to practice open burning, now only 4 households still do so. Villagers were also taught how to upcycle plastic into ecotourism products like keychains using a recycling machine, generating a source of income in the process. Angin says the villagers are keen to learn more about this.
Now, the aim is to replicate this solution in other communities facing similar issues — to inculcate responsible plastic management practices, breathing new life into plastic, while creating a new source of income, all at once.
© 2023 YAYASAN HASANAH (1075550-P). ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.