INTERNATIONAL UNION OF ARCHITECTS AND THE ANTI-TROPICAL HARDWOOD CAMPAIGN
Subsequent to the regrettable confrontation between Yang Berhormat Dato’ Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, Minister of Primary Industries and Nils Carlson, the Secretary General of UIA in Stockholm in 1992 over the destruction of Malaysia’s tropical rain forests and the subsequent verification that “The UIA, after holding its 74th Council meeting in Curitiba, Brazil 27th –31st May 1991, calls its Member Section to ask their members to resist specifying materials which will further the erosion of the rain forests”, it became obligatory for PAM to defend Malaysia’s position on the management of our tropical rain forests and on our methodology of selective logging which is on a sustainable basis. The Assembly and Congress held in Chicago from 17th –21st June 1993, therefore became the forum for this mission, which was expected of PAM by both the Government and the Malaysian Timber Industry Development Council (MTIDC), to explain Malaysian’s policy on the exploitation of its tropical rain forests.
The PAM delegates to the UIA Assembly and Congress managed to contact Ms. Marcia Lucia Guilherme, Chairperson of the Work Group Region III for Architecture and Conservation of Tropical Rain Forests and to request that Pam be included in this Work Group’s presentation. 3 speakers gave presentations, namely Japan, Paraguay and Malaysia.
The speaker from Paraguay, Arg. Rodolfo Garcia Veia, gave a dismal situation in his country where only about 5% of the natural rain forests are left.
He said that his country needed urgent help and Malaysia responded that it was prepared to play a part. The speaker from Japan, Prof. Kazuko Hayashi, Architect, was from the Japan Tropical Forest Action Network. He showed slides of the Penans in Sarawak and in Japan, protesting against logging. They are affiliated to the Sarawak Campaign Committee. He also outlined the group’s anti-tropical hardwood activities in Japan.
PAM, presented a balanced picture of Malaysia’s timber policy and this was well received by those present although it was quite obvious that there were many anti-tropical hardwood NGOs present. Malaysia’s views expressed were also in concurrent with the recommendations of the Work Group on Architecture and Conservation of Tropical Rainforests.
The representative from Brazil, click here Ms. Marcia Lucia Guilherme recommended that Malaysia be included in this Work Group. It is hoped that Malaysia can work together with the other timber producing countries to disseminate information on tropical timber usage and to ensure that explication of tropical timber will be on a sustainable basis with Malaysia as the leader in the field of R & D.
PAM was nominated by Mongolia and subsequently elected on to Council for Region IV. With our election and inclusion into the Work Group, Malaysia is now better placed in a position of influence and to be able to play a more active part to effectively disseminate information on Malaysia’s timber policy and to correct any misconceptions about our timber and for Malaysia to contribute towards guiding the South American colleagues in this field of forestry management.
PAM would undertake the following if required to and supported by
both our Government, namely the Ministry of Primary Industries and
a) To take an active part in UIA;
b) To further increase PAM’s influence in the UIA Bureau and Council;
c) To lobby amongst architects and related members of the industry;
d) To play an active role in the Work Group of Region III on Architecture and Conservation of the Tropical Rain Forests;
e) To activate a Work Group for Region IV (Asia) for Sustainable Architecture and the Tropical Rain Forest;
f) To promote Malaysian Sustainable Architecture on a global basis through publication of Malaysian architecture;
g) In order to be actively involved in the UIA Bureau and Council and Work Groups and to provide assistance as well as to steer the general feelings of the Anti-Tropical Rain Forest Lobby, a constant and regular presence is essential and necessary;
h) To include other global forests for consideration into the Work Group for Architecture and Conservation of the Tropical Rain Forest. The Work Group should include all forests;
i) To establish our networking to garner support and to lead and show by example;
For further in-depth and effective involvement to protect Malaysia’s interest in UIA, MTIDC and the Malaysian Government should consider providing regular information and financial resource for PAM and the profession to act as ‘watch-dog’ in the international arena.