Ministry of Environment will closely monitor the O&G exploration project in the Langkasuka Basin

PETALING JAYA (April 22): The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability (NRES) will closely monitor all new environmental projects in the country, including Petronas’ oil and gas (O&G) exploration in the Langkasuka Basin, located in the northern region of the country. Strait of Melaka.

Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad said this is to ensure that new projects meet environmental standards and uphold a strong sense of responsibility towards the community.

In addition, he said any new project implementation must align with Malaysia’s position, which echoes the UAE consensus established at last year’s COP28 Climate Change Conference in Dubai, which emphasizes the need for a just transition to more sustainable energy sources for national progress.

Nik Nazmi underlined the importance of this position given Malaysia’s current dependence on fossil fuels, with Petronas being one of the major contributors to the national budget through its resource exploration efforts.

“But I believe Petronas is paying attention to this issue, given their sensitivity to the importance of a just transition to more sustainable energy sources.

“We are therefore mindful of this issue (O&G exploration in Langkasuka) to ensure that the agreements and progress we have achieved so far are maintained in upcoming projects,” he told a media conference on PKR on Monday headquarters.

Nik Nazmi was responding to environmental watchdog Rimbawatch’s concerns about the potential impacts of Petronas’ new O&G exploration project in the Langkasuka Basin, located just 30 km from Penang and 20 km from Langkawi.

In a statement, the group said the exploration could not only jeopardize Malaysia’s mitigation efforts, but also jeopardize the biodiversity of coastal marine life, impacting the livelihoods of local fishermen and tourism.

Nevertheless, Nik Nazmi emphasized that the project is still in the exploration phase and will undergo rigorous assessments, including an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by the Ministry of Environment to ensure detailed monitoring.