KLANG: The degazettement of a portion of the Kuala Langat North Forest Reserve (KLNFR) has been given the green light after intense scrutiny carried out by the Public Inquiry Committee in line with the Public Investigation Method (Selangor) 2014.
This was clarified in a statement issued by Selangor Forestry Department director Datuk Ahmad Fadzil Abdul Majid on Wednesday (Sept 1).
“Research results by the consultant company UPM Consultancy & Services Sdn Bhd, engaged by the Selangor government in 2020, were also used in considering the degazettement of the KLNFR.
“Based on the consultant’s research, it was found the biodiversity of the replacement land is almost the same as KLNFR,” said Ahmad Fadzil.
He added the replacement land in Sungai Panjang was also peatland swamp, just like the KLNFR land.
Meanwhile, the replacement land in Ampang Pecah and Bukit Broga were hills forest with the land in Ampang Pecah having a central forest spine, a wildlife ecological chain.
The Bukit Broga replacement land also had high-quality eco-tourism traits, he added.
The degazetted KLNFR land has been given to Gabungan Indah Sdn Bhd for a mixed-commercial development project.
“The investigation process took place over one year from the time the decision of degazettement of the KLNFR was received in November 2019.
“All the protests received were compiled and forwarded to the Selangor Legislative Assembly for further consideration,” said Ahmad Fadzil.
He also said the Selangor government had retained some 46% of the land area in the KLNFR at Mukim Tanjung Duabelas, Kuala Langat district as a permanent forest reserve.
According to Ahmad Fadzil, the KLNFR was isolated from the main forest complex and was facing pressure from the development of saturated soil around it, such as the North-South Expressway Central Link (Elite Highway), Bandar Saujana Putra, Gamuda Cove and Orang Asli villages.
“The KLNFR was also classified as a high-risk fire-prone area by the Selangor Forestry Department in 2016 and has suffered damage from several fires in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2021,” said Ahmad Fadzil.
He added the state government had also imposed several conditions on Gabungan Indah Sdn Bhd, which received approval for the transfer of the said land in 2021.
“Among the conditions is for an Environment Impact Assessment and Social Impact Assessment to be carried out as well as other relevant requirements such as maintaining 20% of the development area as a green lung and to translocate important flora and fauna species,” he said.
He added the Selangor government had carried out extensive due diligence in deciding matters related to the degazettement of the KLNFR.