Saturday, October 3, 2009

Endau Rompin National Park - Kuala Jasin Could Be Better

In my humble opinion Kuala Jasin could be better, below is a copy of suggestion letter I have written to them.

Dear Sir,

During my visit to Endau Rompin Kampung Peta last year, I first saw Kuala Jasin and thought it was a marvelous place for a holiday to escape from the city. At that time, the chalets were in the midst of renovation and I was unable to experience an overnight stay. The surroundings were well shaded by tall trees and looking around I saw many gingers, fungi and other herbs on the forest floor around the visitor area. The air was cool and the closeness of the surrounding vegetation made it feel like you were really in a tropical rainforest . Many trees were labeled and I learnt the names of so many trees.

I made up my mind to visit again in August this year to my disappointment I found out that a new VIP bungalow has been built, new toilets have been constructed and a small hall is being built. In additional many trees had been cut down, including those that had been labeled and the surrounding greenery had been cleared. I was dismayed that this development was accompanied by such wholesale clearing of the original vegetation. Now, the trees which have not been cut down do not offer enough shade to keep the area cool and it is hot and bare. Previously green areas around the kitchen are now gone and the gingers, herbs and other plants on the forest floor are missing too. When I stood near the kitchen, I could see all the way to the new toilet block and almost to the last family chalet 100 metres away. There was no natural greenery in between the buildings to give the area the feel of being close to natural forest or to offer some privacy to guests. Even the surrounding natural vegetation has been cleared drastically. In my view it is done too excessively. With the loss of its cool green atmosphere, this beautiful place has lost its unique and tranquil appearance and is on the way to becoming just another ordinary spot.
The trend of clearing away the natural vegetation cause total expose has also taken place at the NERC, around the family chalets and the dormitories. I’m sure most visitors to a National Park are there to experience and get a feel of our rainforest. What a let down for them to stay in a chalet which is totally exposed to every vehicles or persons that comes down from the NERC road! Sadly, the natural riverside vegetation next to the jetty has also been cleared and many of the beautiful overhanging trees have been chopped down. These trees gave the shady pool its attractive quality, sheltered the aquatic life and kept the pool cool. What was once a cool, green and refreshing scene has lost its natural beauty. It appears there is an obsessive need to clear away vegetation which occurs naturally so as to make everything look neat and tidy or to give an unobstructed view.

It seems the Park authority may have overstepped a fundamental line in the concept of what it means to conserve a natural forest – instead, it is attempting to “tame” the forest when it is more appropriate and in line with conservation to adjust oneself to the natural environment. I appeal to the Park authority, please give us the visitor from the city the experience of what a natural rainforest looks and feels like, rather than attempting to make nature neat and tidy to mirror any parks in the city. Endau-Rompin should proudly display its forest in its natural form, and not provide an unnatural, modified version of the real thing.


Wong Chor Mun


yen said...

Chor Mun,

I am not sure when was your last visit to Bkt Renggit, I was shock to see the adjacent patch of forest from the Deer Park was cleared completely for Palm Oil plantation.

There is little or no enforcement by the relevant Authority and this is very sad.

Wong Chor Mun said...

Hi yen,
It has being long time since my last visit to Bkt Rengit. If I do recall my last visit, the Deer Park Owner told me that the Authority have other plant for Bkt Rengit. A big portion of it's Habitat have to give way for plantation. I do recall when I heard of that. It is a piece of bad news to me.

Palm oil is our leading agricultural commodities. The pro is it is our major profit generating income the impact is deforestration, creating fragmentation to our rainforest. Unitentionaly if we human did not practice sustainability farming we unintentionaly have destroy orangutan, tigers, elephants ... and the list goes on.

Tuck Hong said...

Good letter. I think those people placed in-charge do not appreciate nature and they do not know what they are supposed to do. They are acting like they are managing a small town garden and not a nature reserve.

Jordan Sitorus said...

Its a bit too late, but your letter should make the authorities be more careful next time.


yen said...

I would love to see your results from Fraser's Hill, are you gonna be sharing it with us soon?

It was nice meeting you, hope to see you soon.