Anti-dam groups said the two-billion-dollar Bakun Dam, which is scheduled to come online, would engulf a huge tract of the Borneo jungle in water. Approved by the government in 1986, the project is completed after more than two decades of controversy, opposition and financial constraints triggered by the 1997 Asian crisis.
During intermittent construction of the hydroelectric dam, thousands of indigenous people were uprooted and moved out of the construction and immediate catchment area. Large tracts of rainforests, where natives of the several tribes lived, were cleared to make way for the dam.
Bakun’s reservoir will cover 695 square kilometres and power eight turbines. But for the displaced indigenous people of Sarawak, Bakun is nothing but endless misery. Used to a life of farming, fishing and limited hunting, the tribal people have great difficulty adapting to a cash economy.
"The government must clarify the development plans for Sarawak and give all details, especially their impact on the indigenous people," said Meenakshi Raman, a senior official of Friends of the Earth Malaysia, a member of an international grassroots environmental network from which it derives its name.
"Our primary fear is that these projects involve hugely dirty industries like aluminum smelters and dams and coal power plants, which all degrade the environment in Sarawak and threaten the economy and livelihood of the indigenous people," she said.
The Bakun dam has an estimated generation capacity of 2,400 MW, considered ambitious for Sarawak’s small, agriculture-based economy, which has no use for such huge generated power.
The original Bakun plan was to ship the generated power through undersea cables across the South China Sea to Peninsular Malaysia.
Sarawak plans to build 12 hydroelectric dams to meet its future industrialisation needs or cronies' needs!
pls CLICK on image.
But it does not make sense because Peninsular Malaysia was already experiencing a power glut, with numerous independent crony power producers queuing up to sell power.
Deputy Energy, Water and Communications Minister Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum said the dams were necessary to meet energy demands.
All these are in addition to the 2,400MW Bakun dam and will push the total generating capacity in the state to 7,000MW by 2020, an increase of more than 600% from the current capacity.
How dumb can one get?
Give me half a chance I could use this generated power to fry the asses of Joe SAI-LANG GANDUMB and likeminded Sarawak native leaders.
DANG AND NOW THIS:
Some 80% of the more than 6,000 longhouses and villages in Sarawak’s interior do not have electricity and depend on kerosene for lighting and cooking.
For in Sarawak’s interior, the cost of kerosene could go up as high as RM4.50 a litre or more because of logistical and transport cost, said Sarawak PKR chairman Baru Bian.
“It’s a heavy burden for the poor people of Sarawak, especially the rural population in the interior who pay substantially more for their petrol, cooking gas and other essential consumer items like food and clothing upriver owing to high logistics and transport costs,” he said.