PETALING JAYA, April 22 — The Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability Ministry (NRES) will closely monitor any new environmental projects in the country, including oil and gas (O&G) exploration by Petronas in the Langkasuka basin, situated in the northern region of the Straits of Melaka.

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

Besides this, he said any new project implementation must align with Malaysia’s stance, which adheres to The UAE Consensus established during the COP28 climate change conference in Dubai last year, which highlights the necessity for a fair transition to more sustainable energy sources for national advancement.

Nik Nazmi underscored the significance of this stance, given Malaysia’s current reliance on fossil fuels, with Petronas serving as one of the primary contributors to the national budget through its resource exploration endeavours.


“... but I believe Petronas is attentive to this matter, given their sensitivity to the importance of a fair transition towards 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 forthcoming projects,” he told a media conference at the PKR headquarters here today.

Nik Nazmi was responding to concerns raised by environmental watchdog Rimbawatch regarding the potential impacts of Petronas’ new O&G exploration project in the Langkasuka basin, located just 30 kilometres from Penang and 20 kilometres from Langkawi.


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

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