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Mohd Ali's dream for a green Melaka

MELAKA: After being declared as a developed state on October 20, Melaka's Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam revealed his vision of seeing Melaka emerging as the "Green State" by 2020.

In revealing further his green drive to Bernama, Melaka's far sighted chief minister not only divulged his goals of going green within one decade but also highlighted the green initiatives that are already underway.

Mohd Ali hopes to see the initiatives bearing results within as early as two years, and the state government's resolve and commitment on the "Go Green" drive is best illustrated by the light green theme for the state's official functions.

During an interview, Mohd Ali envisioned that the "Go Green" drive would change Melaka through five transformational efforts within two years.

"I want to see the utilisation of the solar energy, in the nations developing green technology that I visited the solar and wind energy seem to be the main resource that they are utilising," he said.

Thus it is no surprise that Mohd Ali's first and second transformation initiative revolves around solar and wind energy respectively with the first initiative being the harvesting of solar energy in big scale.

Mohd Ali is confident that within two years, Melaka could emerge with a "solar farm" with hundreds of solar panels set up to generate electricity.

"By then Melaka should be able to generate enough electricity for its people and the access supplied to other states through Tenaga Nasional's grid, this will generate revenue to the state," he said.

The second transformation aspect involves the harvesting of wind energy to generate electricity in the state. The state government is looking into the possibility of setting up windmills to generate electricity in Pulau Besar, one of the destinations being developed into another tourist attraction in Melaka.

"However, the location for the windmill and solar panels will depend on the feasibility study," he said.

With the use of renewable energy like solar and wind, long term cost involved in generating electricity can be reduced up to 30%.

The third transformation that Mohd Ali indicated is encouraging people to use the green technology in their daily lives, in making life easier and comfortable.

The chief minister pointed out this transformation is already taking place now with more and more houses in the state having solar panels to generate electricity or heat.

"But I want to see every house in Melaka using solar panels within two years, I also want to see traditional houses in the state having the same on the roofs like the one that we are trying to do at the Hang Tuah village," he said.

The Hang Tuah village in Duyong here is where the Malay warrior Hang Tuah is said to have originated and the green technology can be utilised to attract more visitors to Melaka.

The fourth transformation involves transportation in Melaka with the green technology or the hybrid vehicles dominating the roads.

"Melaka has started to move in this direction with the monorail service along Sungai Melaka is among them, and some traditional transport modes like the rickshaw already having solar panels," he said.

The fifth transformation, is to create more entrepreneurs in manufacturing, developing and commercialising green technology in the state.

The solar valley project in Rembia, Alor Gajah is the pioneer in this effort with Sunpower (M) Sdn Bhd being the first company with a solar panel production facility worth RM2.5 billion on 144 hectares of land.

"When Sunpower starts manufacturing (solar panels), I want to see local companies buying this solar panels and provide solar panel installation services at homes, and if there are those who can develop the solar farms, it's better still," he said.

According to Mohd Ali the opportunities to emerge as green technology entrepreneurs in the state are wide open and the entrepreneurs should be quick to grab the opportunities and do not wait for things to be handed on a silver platter.

Ending the conversation with the writer, Mohd Ali with wide grin noted  "my vision to develop Melaka with green technology goes beyond all this and I need the whole hearted support in transforming this vision into reality," he said. — Bernama
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