Aquatic Ecology Video Project: The Polluted Likas River

How many times do you clean this area? How many times? Everyday From 7AM to 4 PM What do you do during that? We collect trashes Every beaches has rubbish so we need to do it everyday What’s the estimated total weight of trash collected? Oh it isn’t constant Because sometimes during rainy season and strong winds Theres lots of trash Sometimes, theres around 20 lorries And when thers to much trash, we use heavy macines So yes, theres 20 lorries of trash per day This is the dirtiest river Because we also manage Tanjung Aru’s Area Around Putatan, the condition is alright But around these areas, the dirtiest would be Likas River We don’t fish, we trawl instead We usually trawl, evening until night What do you usually catch here? Fish Fish and prawns. Mainly prawns. Because we trawl for shrimps So you sell what you caught? Yes we do After floods, the water turns bad Finding trash (in our net)is something usual There will always be trash since theres squatters (nearby) Why theres lots of trash? Because the nearby sea is vast An then there are trash thrown from islands and rivers So the trash adds up everyday It flows with the tide Where do you think the source of trash in Sungai Likas comes from? It comes from.. It’s not specific, sometimes its from factories And villagers throws their waste straight into the river Especially, near the river’s estuary, theres residence there.So it gets thrown straight into the river Those are the reasons Tanjung lipat should be a tourist and recreational area I feel sad for the river condition The water irrigate is brown When I view from the aerial view of the river, it seems like the contamination comes from the (Likas) river from what I see, the river is already in Class III Yes, probably Class III In my opinion, one of causes for the river condition is there are no action taken for errors happened in the area Most of these pollutants are caused by someone who most definitely broke the law like minor laws, and also obligations that they need to follow but no legal action were taken on them For example On of the contructions Commercial..commercial areas such as food stalls and restaurants all of their waste flows straight into the drain, and the drains flows straight into the river Thats one of the causes They actually need to install grease traps Grease traps… Before you flow your waste into the drain Oils from the waste actually needs to be filtered out But, most doesn’t install it maybe due to the cost Second, maybe it’s caused by I’m not sure, if the housing area near the river banks are illegal or not Theres a lot, right? If you visit Likas If you observe, they discharge their waste directly into the river Third, if you observe other than grease/oil and trash I also observed a lot of sediments there, in the river Sediments are, soil That forms when theres an extensive land clearing in the catchment area Basically, theres those 3 causes extensive land clearing Squatters along the river And also, (weak) law enforcements Do you live around this (Likas) area? yes We want to know, is there a proper garbage disposal system there Yes, there is a dumpsite out there. who manages the dumpsite? Hj Darwin the village headman He the leader who manages it We can’t throw the rubbish into the river It means he educate the villagers here? Yes. Usually, in our place, Health Department always comes and visit So we will work together to throw garbage together and not throw waste into the river. We also work with other departments and established something called Sabah Environmental Education Network (SEEN). SEEN It’s Secretariat is Department of Environment We join forces The programme is about water catchment managment We conduct in on villlages up near water catchments What we do is we made sure that the rivers there stays in Class I (for example) in Kionsom Basically what we do is Raise the local’s awarness regarding their river water quality So we taught them how to do their own assesments The fast way Just visit, collect sample and get the results That’s for their level The results is basically not like the professional ones For our assesment you’ll only get to know if it’s in the medium, good condition Based on a few indicator Not just physical, we also use chemical and biological indicators One thing about the villagers near the water catchment They know their water is clean Back then they don’t really test the condition But after they did, they appreciate their river since it’s still clean, it’s still in Class I, as compared to Sungai Likas thats in Class III They want to take care of it Our department has a section where they manage and figure out ways to overcome Usually when theres land expansion/development Ways to overcome it (pollutant) is We asked them to prepare a plan to control dump and sediment For sediments that got into the river, theres supposed to be a particular infrastructure to filter it (sediments) It’s one of the requirements for all development works It’s called Erosion and Sediment Control Guide ESCP Environmental Department publishes reports every year on the quality of rivers throughout Sabah It’s one of their responsibilities After they publish their report, we’ll observe the (river) classes If it’s in Class II, it’s still moderate Next year, if their report shows Class III There must be something, so we need to check it

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