Gas Malaysia and Perhilitan tie-up to conserve river terrapins

Driving the population recovery for the river terrapins, which are now classified as a critically endangered species


GAS Malaysia Bhd has partnered Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) to initiate a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme at the river terrapin conservation centre located in Bota Kanan, Perak.

The collaboration is part of an effort to drive the population recovery for the river terrapins, which has seen a drastic decrease.

Perhilitan first deputy DG Fakhrul Hatta Musa said the dwindling number was caused by constant profiteering activities that has escalated over the years.

“Once found in huge numbers in most rivers and bays, river terrapins now face an uncertain future. They are now classified as a critically endangered species with its population severely depleted due to many years of exploitation for its meat and eggs,” he said.

Gas Malaysia CEO Ahmad Hashimi Abdul Manap said there will always be hope for the river terrapin population as long as steps are taken to maximise the species’ production.

Over 30 people including Gas Malaysia staff and Perhilitan representatives attended the CSR programme, with the highlight being an egg-hatching incubator presentation from Gas Malaysia to Perhilitan that is expected to induce the terrapin’s population recovery.

“We remain optimistic that with the new incubator, which can improve the success rate of hatching to 95% from about 50% currently, the population of the river terrapins will slowly, but surely, recover,” Ahmad Hashimi said.

Gas Malaysia also provided the conservation centre with several water pumps and filters for the river terrapin breeding pond to remove suspended solids and other sediments that dirty the water.

Ahmad Hashimi added that the conservation programme was part of the group’s CSR 2017 plan.

“Perak was chosen as the location for implementing our CSR programme this year due to our involvement in the state,” he added.

Gas Malaysia has been conducting business in Perak by supplying natural gas to industrial customers in Kampar, Kamunting, Lumut, Parit Buntar, Tambun, Sitiawan, Tronoh and a few others.

At present, the group operates and maintains a 112 km natural gas distribution pipeline, which in turn serves 45 industrial customers in the state.

Recently, the natural gas distributor partnered state and federal governments to build a supplementary 140km pipeline located in Kinta Valley.

The pipeline network is expected to enhance Perak’s economy through netting direct investments, boosting industrial growth and generating new career opportunities in the area.

Ahmad Hashimi said the group’s sustainable growth must adhere to a moral foundation.

“Ingrained in us is the precept that in order for a company to be more sustainable, its business must be built on ethical practices.

“Hence, our business ambitions are adequately balanced with responsible corporate practices for the environment, as well as for the community in which we operate our business, as it gives greater meaning to our mission of providing the cleanest, safest, cost-effective and reliable energy solutions to the nation,” he said.