[Editor’s Note: Chow Kon Yeow (DAP- Padang Kota), State Local Government chairman, shared that 37 cases have been spotted since April.]
This post originally appeared on http://www.nst.com.my/news/2016/11/191676/eyes-penang-hills-drones-used-spot-illegal-clearing-activities.
GEORGE TOWN: A total of 40 areas on the hills of the state have appeared to be cleared, as spotted by drone cameras, the State Legislative Assembly was told today. State Local Government chairman Chow Kon Yeow (DAP- Padang Kota) said, a total of 37 cases had been spotted since April.
Chow said seven of the cases detected were on private land and the others were on government land. “Of the total, 28 spots are still being determined if it was illegally cleared or merely suffered from erosion,” he said. It was reported that the state’s Hill Land Working Committee has revealed that more than 100ha of land on hills in the Relau, Air Itam and Paya Terubong areas had been cleared.
Chow said the remote-controlled aerial vehicle drones with cameras captured the footages at hard to reach areas, giving the local authorities a better view. He added that these drones enabled the state to better monitor the hills for illegal activities.
At the moment, he stated that further measures are being formulated to enhance monitoring and enforcement. Chow said there are plans to expand monitoring times to weekends and public holidays, as well as increasing the number of staff in the hill watch unit. “We are also installing closed-circuit television cameras at 22 locations, which will be done by Feb 2017 for permanent and live monitoring,” he said