New Straits Times - - Letters -

SAHABAT Alam Malaysia (SAM) is ap­palled at the fre­quent oc­cur­rences of roadkill af­fect­ing our en­dan­gered species. It has been re­ported that since 2011, wild an­i­mals, such as civets, wild boars, mar­bled cats and tapirs, have been killed in road ac­ci­dents.

Among wildlife, mam­mals make up the high­est num­ber of an­i­mals killed in these ac­ci­dents, ac­count­ing for 1,110 deaths.

Ac­cord­ing to the nat­u­ral re­sources and en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter on July 14 last year, these pro­tected species were killed on fed­eral, state and mu­nic­i­pal roads, in­volv­ing 61 roads and high­way net­works in the coun­try.

Not sur­pris­ingly, most ac­ci­dents have taken place in or near forested ar­eas where wild an­i­mals tried to cross a road to get from one for­est to an­other.

De­spite SAM and other non­govern­men­tal or­gan­i­sa­tions high­light­ing the harm­ful ef­fects of roads to wildlife, road den­sity con­tin­ues to in­crease with roads criss-cross­ing the coun­try.

Fed­eral and state gov­ern­ments, and lo­cal trans­porta­tion de­part­ments de­vote huge bud­gets to the con­struc­tion and up­grad­ing of roads.

Multi­na­tional lend­ing in­sti­tu­tions fi­nance roads that dis­sect rain­forests and usher in a flood of set­tlers who de­stroy them and in­dige­nous cul­tures.

Pub­lic land-man­ag­ing agen­cies build thou­sands of miles of roads each year to sup­port their re­source ex­trac­tion ac­tiv­i­ties.

Most pub­lic agen­cies dis­re­gard the eco­log­i­cal im­pact of roads, and at­tempt to jus­tify log­ging roads as ben­e­fit­ing the pub­lic and wildlife man­age­ment.

Although the ef­fects of dif­fer­ent types of roads vary, vir­tu­ally all are bad and the net ef­fect is cat­a­strophic.

Roadkill does have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on wildlife pop­u­la­tion.

The great­est threat posed to wildlife are speed­ing ve­hi­cles on high­ways. Un­im­proved, un­paved roads are less dan­ger­ous.

In­crease in traf­fic vol­ume re­sults in more col­li­sions on any given road, and in our prof­li­gate

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