Authorities and Industry Experts draft new legislation to replace the Environmental Quality Act 1974

Authorities and Industry Experts draft new legislation to replace the Environmental Quality Act 1974
Updated date: 06/11/2019
KOTA KINABALU, Nov 6 - The Department of Environment (DOE) with the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (MESTECC) is enacting a new law, called the Environmental Protection Act to replace the Environmental Quality Act of 1974.
Deputy Chief JAS director (Operations) Wan Abdul Latif Wan Jaafar said the draft law was drafted and was under review before being brought to Parliament next year. The new law, he said, was expanded in scope to the existing law, which includes environmental pollution involving air, water and hazardous toxic wastes while many new contaminants were detected but were not included in the act.
''The enactment of the new act has taken into account all of these pollutants as well as current issues of development and many things we look at,'' he said after opening the two-day Environmental Quality Act 1974 seminar starting today with 570 participants.
He said the new Act would also strengthen the implementation of DOE tasks in line with the latest developments in management and environmental issues including the use of the best pollution control technology and the country's obligations to international conventions.
''In this regard there are two important issues, first the scope of jurisdiction is expanded taking into account current pollution and new pollutants. Both of us have higher penalties and penalties for environmental offenses,'' he said.
Meanwhile, Wan Abdul Latif said the study conducted for the restructuring of the industrial buffer zone in Pasir Gudang Johor to be closer to home was not yet finalized.
He said the study was conducted by several experts to establish buffer zones between industrial and residential areas as well as schools following the air pollution incident.
He said the Pasir Gudang industrial area had been around for a long time but housing and schools were being built closer to the industrial areas.
''The study also saw moving industrial areas and schools located closer together so that the distance between the industry and the residential and school areas was safe.
''The study is yet to be finalized before it is presented to the government,'' Wan Abdul Latif said.

18 Nov 2019