COMMUNITY-BASED WATERSHED MANAGEMENT SYSTEM TOWARDS SUPPORTING SUSTAINABLE USE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY IN KAMPUNG MUDUNG ABUN, BELAGA DISTRICT, SARAWAK
This project is follow-on from an earlier project funded by the Global Environment Facility – Small Grant Programme (GEF-SGP) Malaysia entitled, “Integrated Community Based Micro Hydro System to Improve Sustainability Livelihood of Indigenous Kenyah Community in Mudung Abun of Belaga District, Sarawak”.

In August 2010, the project was successfully completed, whereby; an installation of 20 kilowatts (kw) micro hydropower system (MHS) offers a sustainable energy supply for use in the community. The long term benefit of the MHS is that it has the potential to supply an affordable and sustainable form of renewable energy for the household lighting in the Mudung Abun community.

Although the project has been successfully implemented, however, the following has been deemed as remaining problems that requires attention urgently:

• Lack of integrated approach in conservation of biodiversity and management of natural resources of forest and river ecosystems;
• A need towards strengthening community building to ensure the sustainability of their community-based conservation projects.
• Lack of expertise on MHS within the community and their supporting CBOs.
• Replacement and maintenance of leakages and broken PVC penstocks that cause interruption and efficiency of the MHS operation.

The project is very much needed in order to achieve holistic community-based conservation approach on the sustainable utilization of natural resources and energy made available through the micro hydro system to the community. This is because energy is considered in the context of the services it provides rather than as an end in itself and is not limited to the household lighting only. Inevitably, watersheds/catchment area and its biodiversity have to be given total protection that as well as encompasses the conservation of river and aquatic species. This requires greater community initiatives and efforts in the demarcation of the watershed and the management of MHP. Hence, integrated approach to watersheds management with conservation of river is integral.

By undertaking this project, IPIMAS intends to further address the critical issues pertaining to climate change and global warming and highlighting the local actions in mitigating this phenomenon. With this project, IPIMAS is enthusiastic to enhance the capacity of the Indigenous community to continue maintaining and conserving the biodiversity and natural resources that sustain the operation of their micro hydro system.

With integrated approach through community-based watershed management system, the community capacity in their conservation initiative will be further strengthened with the establishment of Abun River catchment area. The area is crucial water source for the micro hydro project and the Dangang River. The river will be “melong” (conserve) with setting up of “Tagal system”- traditional practice of restricted uses of resources. This will help the creation of jungle trails within the forest and watersheds areas to promote eco-tourism activities. The survey, demarcation and zonation of water-catchment and resource use areas will be carried out and set as community conserve areas. The proposed project also intends to further enhance the preservation of community forest to ensure sustainability of important non-timber forest products (NTFPs) and the practices of traditional knowledge in the community.

Objectives and Activities:

1) Enhance integrated approach for watersheds and natural resource management in conserving biodiversity and forest area.
1.1 Planting of indigenous trees and biodiversity enrichments within watersheds, community forest area and villagers forestry plots.

1.2 Organise workshop on integrated community-based watershed management system.

1.3 Survey and demarcation of watersheds and land use/ zoning area.


2) Promote river conservation (melong sungai) through setting up of the Tagal system in the area, particularly Dangang River.
2.1 Setting-up Tagal System, the traditional resource management practices of fish & river conservation in Dangang River near Mudung Abun village.

2.2 Establish and improvement of river pools for fish habitat and conservation of fish fries to increase stocks in the area.


3) Enhance sustainability of the community-based micro hydro system and increase capacity of the community and other stakeholders.
3.1 Organise training to enhance community skills on management and maintenance of Micro Hydro system (MHS).

3.2 Repair, Restore and maintenance of the penstocks


4) Share information on community actions in mitigating climate change and best practices in resource management and biodiversity conservation through the public exhibitions and dissemination of various documentations.
4.1 Conduct public seminar cum exhibitions on community actions in mitigating climate change and best practices in resource management and biodiversity conservation.

4.2 Produce and disseminate information on community best practices and sustainable use of natural resources.

Expected Outputs;

1) Community-based watersheds management system established and biodiversity enrichment and forest conservation enhanced within water-catchments and community forest area;

2) Watersheds zone and forest areas demarcated

3) River conservation sites established & developed in Dangang River near Mudung Abun village.

4) Community skills further enhanced on operation, management and maintenance of Micro Hydro system (MHS).

5) The MHS operation improved with new penstocks procured and faulty pipes replaced.

6) Information on community actions in mitigating climate change and best practices in resource management and biodiversity conservation shared.

7) Information on community best practices and sustainable use of natural resources produced and disseminated.

 
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Project Snapshot

Grantee: Institut Pribumi Malaysia Sarawak
Country: Malaysia
Area Of Work: Biodiversity
Climate Change Mitigation
Operational Phase: Phase 5
Grant Amount: US$ 43,575.00
Co-Financing Cash:
Co-Financing in-Kind: US$ 19,900.00
Project Number: MAL/SGP/OP5/STAR/CC/12/01
Start Date: 5/2012
End Date: 7/2013
Status: Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Emphasis on Sustainable Livelihoods
Project outputs 1 and 2 will indirectly provide the local community with a more sustainable livelihood in terms of livestock supply (fish, etc) through the conservation of their natural resources.
Gender Focus
Special attention will be paid to women to ensure their active involvement in decision-making and implementation of the project. It is ensured that women are equally represented in capacity building activities. This is important to draw upon the skills and knowledge of women in the community.
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