Partnership to set up rainforest knowledge centre and ERT Tree Nursery at City of Elmina.
ARA DAMANSARA, 26 August 2019 – Sime Darby Property has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Tropical Rainforest Conservation & Research Centre (TRCRC), a local non-governmental organisation (NGO) with expertise in rainforest conservation and research.
The MoU outlines the partnership between Sime Darby Property and TRCRC for the operation of the Elmina Rainforest Knowledge Centre (ERKC) and an Endangered, Rare and Threatened (ERT) Native Tree Nursery within the 300-acre Central Park in the City of Elmina. This area is connected to the 2,700 acre Subang Forest Reserve and will be an off-site conservation area, extending the rainforest into the township’s urban park.
Sime Darby Property Acting Group Chief Executive Officer, Dato’ Wan Hashimi Albakri Wan Ahmad Amin Jaffri said the collaboration is a significant boost to the Group’s sustainability efforts by safeguarding the existence of native endangered tree species at its townships for future generations.
“Sime Darby Property has been involved in various environmental initiatives, such as providing ample green spaces and landscaping in our projects, organising community events to raise environmental awareness and environmental enhancements through the planting of endangered, rare and threatened tree species at our townships and developments.
“For the City of Elmina, our focus is on replanting an urban rainforest within the 300-acre Elmina Central Park to improve biodiversity value, help mitigate climate change by sequestering carbon and to create an environment that provides opportunities to learn about the importance of nature. In essence, the reforestation project is carried out to connect our communities with nature. TRCRC’s expertise will help us complete our mission and enhance community awareness on the benefits of co-existing with nature,” Wan Hashimi said.
The ERKC is positioned as the “Gateway to Malaysia’s Natural Heritage”, with the objective of connecting communities within and beyond the City of Elmina to Malaysia’s natural heritage. The centre will focus on environmental education and conservation, research & development, promotion of eco-tourism and other green activities.
The ERT Native Tree Nursery will be a facility focusing on producing up to 100,000 threatened species under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. These trees will be planted first within the Elmina Central Park and due to their limited availability, the ERT Native Tree Nursery is the solution for continuous supply of plants required for planting at the township and other Sime Darby Property townships in the future.
“Protecting and conserving threatened, and endangered plant species is at the heart of what we do,” said Dr. Dzaeman Dzulkifli, Executive Director, TRCRC. “Our collaboration with Sime Darby Property will help raise awareness on the plight of the Malaysian rainforest, and hopefully make rainforest conservation more accessible for people to participate in.”
The construction of the ERKC at the City of Elmina is underway and is expected to be completed by mid-September 2019, while the ERT Native Tree Nursery will be constructed by the middle of 2020. TRCRC plans to manage and operate both facilities, with a portion of the profits from the sale of trees from the nursery funding the programmes at the ERKC. This ties in to TRCRC’s core work of addressing biodiversity loss by rescuing endangered plant species, nurturing them in their Tropical Rainforest Living Collections and then using the seedlings to restore Malaysia’s forests.
These new initiatives builds on the Group’s biodiversity program which started in 2011 with the T.R.E.E Programme (an environmental initiative focusing on communities) and the T-2-T Initiative, a tree planting tracking calculator that is used to keep a record of all landscape tree planting – both IUCN Red List Species and Exotic Tree species planted at its townships. As at December 2018, Sime Darby Property has planted 2,800 IUCN Red List trees at the City of Elmina and a total of 19,089 IUCN Red List trees across its 21 townships. The nursery will aid in ramping up efforts by Sime Darby Property in delivering more sustainable townships in the future.
As part of Sime Darby Property’s ongoing biodiversity programme, the Group has also published the Malaysian Threatened and Rare Tree Identification and Landscape Guideline, providing useful information for landscape architects, students and others to identify tree species, understand their growth form, aesthetic value and environmental needs. The guideline is available for free through Sime Darby Property, ILAM, UPM, Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (FRIM) and Yayasan Sime Darby websites.
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About Sime Darby Property Berhad
Sime Darby Property is Malaysia’s largest property developer in terms of land bank with 20,374 acres of remaining developable land. On the back of a successful 46-year track record of developing sustainable communities, Sime Darby Property has to date built 23 active townships/developments with a global reach that encompasses assets and operations across the Asia Pacific region and the United Kingdom. In the UK, as part of a Malaysian consortium, Sime Darby Property is the developer of the iconic Battersea Power Station project in central London.
Sime Darby Property is a multiple award-winning property group with numerous local and international accolades. It is the first Malaysian property developer to be awarded the International FIABCI Prix d’Excellence Awards twice for its Subang Jaya and UEP Subang Jaya townships. The company bagged its 9th consecutive Gold at the Putra Brand Awards 2018 and its 6th consecutive Top 10 Developers Awards at the BCI Asia 2015. Sime Darby Property has also been recognised as among the top developers in Malaysia in the annual The Edge Top Property Developers Awards, a recognition which the company consistently receives since 2009.
For more information, log on to www.simedarbyproperty.com
Tropical Rainforest Conservation and Research Centre (TRCRC) is a not-for-profit non-governmental organization, focusing on the conservation and preservation of rainforests and endangered plant species, with an overarching aim to restore forests through economically sustainable viable restoration projects. We are driven by our core goal – to safeguard rare, threatened and endangered plant species, and reintroduce them back into their native habitats through landscape-level initiatives.
For more information, please visit www.trcrc.org.
Ahmad Shahriman Johari
Head, Corporate Communications
Sime Darby Property Berhad
Mobile: 019 – 333 8320
Head, External Communications
Sime Darby Property Berhad
Mobile: 019 – 267 6346
Stakeholder Engagement Manager
Tropical Rainforest Conservation and Research Centre Berhad
Mobile: 019 – 699 0941