Tuesday 27 July 2010


SOME 400 people gathered on Saturday at the site for a proposed coal-fired power plant asking the government to stop the plan.

Comprising villagers from Kampung Sinakut and locals from Lahad Datu, the group held up banners saying they do not want a coal-fired plant, as it would have a negative impact on the environment.

They gathered at Sinakut, which is the site for the proposed plant, as a sign of solidarity and opposition towards the project which happens to be at the shores of the Coral Triangle, an area that harbours rich marine life.

Sinakut village headman Mr Jimi Uddin said locals were concerned about the project as they are aware it would have an impact on their livelihoods.

"We are fishermen and we depend on the sea. We also have seaweed farms which help us earn extra income.

"We were told that we would be relocated to Sungai Merah, which is away from the sea. The government is carrying out this project without taking into consideration our concerns. It is not true that we are for the project," Jimi, 55, said.

The event at Sinakut was organized by the Lahad Datu chapter of the Sabah Environment Protection Association (SEPA).

SEPA is a member of Green SURF (Sabah Unite to Re-Power the Future), a coalition of non-governmental organizations that are asking the government to go for clean energy options instead of a coal plant.

Village elder Paklah Samad said he is objecting the plant because sea and air pollution will have an impact on his children and grandchildren.

SEPA Lahad Datu spokesman Vincent Ng said 200 people drove up from this east coast town to show their support to villagers.

"We are saying no because we live in Lahad Datu and we will be the first to experience environmental impacts of this plant," Ng said in a statement issued by Green SURF.

He said the gathering in Sinakut was aimed at showing Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd that the people of Lahad Datu do not want the plant.


Coal pollutants affect all major body organ systems and contribute to four of the five leading causes of mortality in the U.S.: heart disease, cancer, stroke, and chronic lower respiratory diseases. This conclusion emerges from our reassessment of the widely recognized health threats from coal. Each step of the coal lifecycle-mining, transportation, washing, combustion, and disposing of post combustion wastes-impacts human health.

Coal combustion in particular contributes to diseases affecting large portions of the U.S. population, including asthma, lung cancer, heart disease, and stroke, compounding the major public health challenges of our time. It interferes with lung development, increases the risk of heart attacks, and compromises intellectual capacity.

Oxidative stress and inflammation are indicated as possible mechanisms in the exacerbation and development of many of the diseases under review. In addition, the report addresses another, less widely recognized health threat from coal: the contribution of coal combustion to global warming, and the current and predicted health effects of global warming. Check Here!

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