Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) urges the Penang state government and Department of Environment (DOE) to take urgent action to curb industrial waste pollution in Kebun Kuyung, near Nibong Tebal in Seberang Perai Selatan district.
There are three factories operating in Kebun Kuyung. The pollution that has been persisting since 10 years ago is not only causing a stink and turning the drain water in this area black but also polluting the nearby Sungai Kerian.
The villagers here have complained to the Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP) and the Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID) but until now no action has been taken to resolve the pollution problem.
SAM is concerned that if the pollution problem is not curtailed, the environment here will be worse affected. Aquatic life in Sungai Kerian especially fish and prawns that are the main catch for small fishers here will be more seriously affected and reduced, subsequently threatening their income.
In a survey conducted by SAM, we found that besides the local community here being exposed to the pollution, the situation may become worse and threaten agriculture here including nearby paddy fields if the area is flooded.
SAM is disappointed that the problem has yet to be resolved although the pollution problem is long standing and complaints have been lodged to the relevant authorities.
In view of this, SAM urges the Penang state government, MPSP, relevant departments and agencies to urgently investigate the cause of the pollution and take stringent action against the factories that were polluting the drain and river here. The drain must be cleaned up so that there is no lingering stench.
SAM hopes that the responsible authorities will conduct frequent and continuous monitoring to ensure that the pollution problem does not recur.