Environment

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Minister of Urban Well-Being, Housing and Local Government must give the following assurances to ensure that the incinerator option is not the ‘default’ option despite the international open tender

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang, 25th of November, 2013 in Kuala Lumpur

Minister of Urban Well-Being, Housing and Local Government must give the following assurances to ensure that the incinerator option is not the ‘default’ option despite the international open tender

Today, a group of concerned citizens from the Kepong area, led by the Kuala Lumpur Tak Nak Insinerator (KTI) NGO, have marched from Taman Sri Murni in Kepong all the way to parliament, a walk of more than 15km. They have serious concerns over the proposal by the Ministry of Urban Well-Being, Housing and Local Government to build a 1000 ton / day incinerator in Taman Beringin, Kepong which is a highly populated area. These concerns include: the release of poisonous dioxins as part of the incineration process, the high cost to build and maintain an incinerator and the high possibility of a fall in property prices as a result of the building of an incinerator in this area.

On the 12th of November, the Minister, Dato Abdul Rahman Dahlan, said in parliament that after a Ministerial Problem Solving Session with the Prime Minister, it was decided that all technology options would be accepted for the open international tender. It was confirmed on the 18th of November, in a briefing to residents of Kepong by Dato Dr. Nadzri Yahaya, the Director of the National Department of Solid Waste Management under the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government that these technologies would include non-incinerator options as such Anaerobic Digestion and Materials Recovery Facilities (MRFs).

I call upon the Minister to provide the public, especially the residents of Kepong who will be the most affected by the building of this waste-to-energy plant, with the following assurances:

(i)                That the terms of reference for the open international tender for the waste-to-energy options will be made public and will not be biased towards favouring the incinerator option

(ii)              That all of the bids for the ‘waste-to-energy’ option will be made publicly available so these bids can receive public scrutiny

(iii)             That if the Detailed Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA) shows that whichever technology that is chosen is not suitable, that the ‘waste-to-energy’ solution from the international bid will not be implemented

Thus far, the Minister has not been fully transparent about the bidding process, the terms of reference of the bid, the possible cost and other relevant information pertaining to this waste-to-energy solution.

If the Minister fails to provide these assurances, it will only increase the distrust among the residents of Kepong and even the Klang Valley that the open international bidding and the subsequent DEIA will only be rubber stamps to build an incinerator in Taman Beringin.

Dr. Ong Kian Ming

Member of Parliament for Serdang

Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Dato’ Abdul Rahman Dahlan must clarify that an incinerator is only one of many waste disposal options at the Taman Beringin transfer station in Kepong

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang on the 19th of November 2013

Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Dato’ Abdul Rahman Dahlan must clarify that an incinerator is only one of many waste disposal options at the Taman Beringin transfer station in Kepong

Yesterday evening, on the 18th of November, Dato’ Dr. Nadzri Yahaya, the Director of the National Department of Solid Waste Management under the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government dropped a bombshell on the residents of Kepong when he said that he had ‘misled’ the minister by giving him the impression that building an incinerator was the only available option at the Taman Beringin waste transfer station in Kepong. This was the reason why the Minister, Dato’ Abdul Rahman Dahlan, was insisting that an open tender had already taken place in September for an incinerator in Taman Beringin.

Instead, Dato’ Dr. Nadzri Yahaya, in his briefing to the residents of Kepong at the Jinjang North Community Center, informed those present that the open tender was for a ‘waste to energy’ facility which includes the following three options:

(i)                Thermal Treatment Plant in the form of an incinerator plant, a gasification plant or a pyrolysis plant

(ii)              Anaerobic digester for organic waste

(iii)             Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) or Materials Recovery Facility (MRF)

At the same time, Dato’ Dr. Nadzri also gave the assurance that all the bids for the different options, by local as well as international players, would be made public so that the members of the public can evaluate for themselves on whether the best option was chosen.

Dato’ Dr. Nadzri also mentioned that the bids would be evaluated based on the ‘best available techniques not entailing excessive costs’ (BATNEEC) and that the technology must be a proven technology that is environmentally friendly and cost effective.

He further mentioned that a Detailed Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA) would be conducted for a period of nine months after the choice of the ‘waste to energy’ option has been chosen.

Given these announcements made by Dato’ Dr. Nadzri, the Minister of Urban Well Being, Housing and Local Government, Dato’ Abdul Rahman Dahlan, should immediately clarify that it is not certain that an incinerator plant would be built in Taman Beringin, Kepong and that this is only one of the options available. He should also confirm that the open tender for this project is open to all of the options mentioned by Dato’ Dr. Nadzri, of which the incinerator plant is just one option. At the same time, the Minister should also assure the public that all of the tenders for this project will be made available to the public. Finally, the Minister should assure the residents in Kepong that if the DEIA does not find the option that has been chosen to be suitable, the ‘waste to energy’ plant proposal will be scrapped.

The Minister’s insistence that an incinerator will be built in Taman Beringin has already created a lot of distrust and unhappiness among the residents in Kepong. If he has to have any chance of rebuilding this lost trust, it is of utmost importance that he makes clear what Dato’ Dr. Nadzri has told the residents in his briefing in Kepong yesterday evening.

Dr. Ong Kian Ming

Member of Parliament for Serdang