The preservation of forest resources is a global responsibility to help sustain the development for and ensure mankind continue to thrive into the future.
The significance of Peninsular Malaysia’s Central Forest Spine (CFS) in providing multiple ecosystem services for the country cannot be over exaggerated. It acts as the water tower, supplying water to some 22.3 million people in the peninsular. It keeps the health of the local environment in check, provide climate regulation, soil protection and carbon storage and sequestration. Covering an area of approximately 5.3 million hectares (ha); spanning about 40% of the country’s total terrestrial area, and over 91% of Peninsular Malaysia’s forest areas, tackling the CFS is a gargantuan task.
The ongoing degradation of the area over the last 50-plus years has led to many environmental and climate issues resulting in the intensity of local extinction of Malaysian animal and plant species, and pressure on water resources. The urgency for action has led to Hasanah to focus on the preservation and conservation of the CFS.
Under its 2016 – 2018 grant cycle, Hasanah awarded grants specific to Partners in the CFS:
• Tropical Rainforest Conservation Research Centre (TRCRC) to set up a living collection of rare, threatened and endangered indigenous tropical rainforest species of trees that thrive within the CFS ecosystem. This will build a credible and viable collection of seeds and seedlings that will come into play in connecting the fragmented forests of CFS.
• Global Environment Centre (GEC) to support community-based action groups on river conservation programme through a National River Care Fund (NRCF) that will contribute towards responsible management of activities in Malaysia’s key river streams AND Integrated Management of Sg Ulu Kinta
• WildAsia (WA) and University of Nottingham’s Management and Ecology of Malaysian Elephants (MEME) partnership in identifying priority ecological linkages in the CFS and developing management guidelines for connectivity
• Water Watch Penang (WWP) and University of Nottingham’s Management and Ecology of Malaysian Elephants (MEME) partnership in building a multi-stakeholder roadmap for the protection of Ulu Muda
• South East Asian Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP) on building stakeholders capacity in valuating ecosystem services through local adaptation of the Toolkit for Ecosystem Service Site-Based Assessment (TESSA) tool in Malaysia
6 Clean Water and Sanitation
Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
7 Affordable and Clean Energy
Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
12 Responsible Consumption and Production
Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
13 Climate Action
Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
14 Life Below Water
Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
15 Life on Land
Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss