Johor may seek foreign help over Pasir Gudang air pollution issue, says state Education chief

A teacher from SK Pasir Gudang 4 helps a student put on a face mask in Pasir Gudang, Johor June 30, 2019. — Bernama pic
A teacher from SK Pasir Gudang 4 helps a student put on a face mask in Pasir Gudang, Johor June 30, 2019. — Bernama pic

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ISKANDAR PUTERI, July 22 — The Johor government has not ruled out the possibility of securing the services of experts in the country and abroad to find a long-term solution to the air pollution issue in Pasir Gudang.

State Education, Human Resources, Science and Technology Committee chairman Aminolhuda Hassan said today finding the best solution for all parties in the area encompassed a holistic study on and evaluation of Pasir Gudang.

“In this regard, at the level of the state government, we are looking at the priorities. We are looking at all angles so as to provide the best solution for all, the people, industrial workers, in terms of health and safety.

“The issue is still under discussion. We have yet to make decisions, but we plan to do the best. We are gathering views and proposals. Getting experts from the country and abroad for their opinions it will take time,” he said.

Aminolhuda spoke to reporters after presenting the International Data Corporation (IDC) Smart City Asia Pacific Awards at Forest City Phoenix Hotel, here. He was asked whether the state government had plans to relocate the inhabitants and industries of Pasir Gudang.

In a related development, Johor Department of Environment (DoE) director Wan Abdul Latiff Wan Jaffar said DoE is following up with the factories to ensure that devices to detect volatile organic compounds are supplied to the affected schools.

“So far, 53 factories have agreed to supply the device,” he said when contacted by Bernama today.

Air pollution, allegedly from the numerous chemical factories in Pasir Gudang, has twice affected the people living near factories this year, sending many of them, including schoolchildren, to hospital for having inhaled the toxic fumes. — Bernama

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