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Focus on Environment


*Focus on Environment *

*Challenges and Perspectives *

*for Sustainable Development *

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[*Subhash Bhore & K. Marimuthu, Editors *]

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*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

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Proceedings of the ‘National Seminar on Sustainable Environment and

Health 2016’ & ‘World Environment Day-2016 (WED-2016)’ events held

on the campus of AIMST University, Kedah, Malaysia

*Editors *

Subhash Bhore & K. Marimuthu

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*Focus on Environment *

*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development *

Subhash Bhore & K. Marimuthu (Editors)[* *]

Published by AIMST University


ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5 (Print version)

eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 (e-Book version)

Financial support for the ‘National Seminar on Sustainable

Environment and Health 2016’ and ‘WED-2016’ events

was provided by:

AIMST University

OTA Tunnel Squad Sdn. Bhd.

• SKiWealth Sdn. Bhd.

• Merchantrade Asia Sdn. Bhd.

• Lembaga Sumber Air Negeri Kedah

• Mutaiya Group of Companies

• Poliklinik Sakthi N Sheila Sdn Bhd, Kulim

Conference and WED-2016 events were organized by:

*Published by *

AIMST University

*Printed by *

AIMST University

*Copyright *

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© 2016 by the authors; editors; AIMST University, Malaysia. This

book is an open access book distributed under the terms and










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data provided the original article and book is fully cited. This open access aims to

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Disclaimer: The information provided in this book is designed to highlight the views,

perspectives and or research findings of respective contributors. While the best

efforts have been used in preparing this book, Editors and or Publisher make no

representations or warranties of any kind and assume no liabilities of any kind with

respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents and specifically disclaim

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liable or responsible to any person or entity with respect to any loss or incidental or

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indirectly, by the information highlighted herein. Readers should be aware that the

information provided in this book may change.

All articles, reviews, and notes published in this book are deemed to reflect the

individual views of respective authors and not the official points of view, either of the

Editors or of the Publisher.

*Edited by *

Dr. Subhash J. Bhore (Senior Associate Professor)1, and

Dr. K. Marimuthu (Professor)2

[_Address for Correspondance: _]

_1Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, AIMST University, _

[_Bedong-Semeling Road, 08100 Bedong, Kedah Darul Aman, Malaysia; Telephone _]

[_ No.: +604 429 8176; e-mail: [email protected] / [email protected] _]

[_2Chancellery, AIMST University, Bedong-Semeling Road, 08100 Bedong, Kedah _]

_Darul _

_Aman, _

[_Malaysia; _]

_Telephone _

[_No.: _]

[_+604 _]

_429 _

[_1054; _]

[_e-mail: _]

[[email protected] _]

*Edition *

First; December 23, 2016


This book is dedicated to all researchers

working in various domains of science and

technology, and to all stakeholders those

are working for the global sustainable

development to improve the health of the

people and planet.

[*World Environment Day-2016 (WED-2016) Events Steering *]

[* Committee* *]

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Ms. Vijayananthinee Arumugam

Prof. Dr. Kasi Marimuthu

Ms. Ponnarasy Ganasen

Mr. Jeevandran Sundarasekar

[*Co-chairpersons *]

Ms. Mangalarani

Mr. Christapher Parayil Varghese

Dr. Gokul Shankar

*Publicity and Sponsors *

Mr. Arunagiri Shanmugam

Dr. Sivachandran Parimannan

Mr. Anthony Tee


Mr. Siventhiran

Ms. Kalaiselvee Rethinam

*Treasurer *

*Secretariat *

Mr. G. Prabhakaran

Dr. Shalini Sivadasan

Mr. Halikhan

Dr. Rohini Karunakaran

Ms. Elil Suthamathi

*Safety *

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Mr. S. Maheswaran

*National Seminar *

Dr. Subhash J. Bhore

[*IT & AV *]

Dr. Anthony Leela

Mr. Gobinath

Dr. Lee Su Yin

Dr. V. Ravichandran

*Logistics *

Dr. S. Parasuraman

Mr. D.S Muraly Velavan

Dr. Venkateskumar

Mr. Neeraj Paliwal

Dr. Sunitha Namani

Ms. Musalinah Buzri

Dr. Jawahar Dhanavel

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Dr. Saurabh Prakash

*Facilities *

Dr. Durga Prasad

Mr. S. Krishnan

Dr. Ajay Jain

Mr. V. Krishnan

Mr. Maheswaran

Ms. Yoganandhi

Mr. Nithiananthan

Mr. Girish Kumar

*of/at AIMST University

Ms. Veni Chandrakasan

Mr. R. Rizhi

Mr. Elanchezhian

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*Slogan writing, Quiz, Debate, Trash to *

*treasure competitions *

Ms. Faustina Lerene Dominic

Ms. Rebecca Jayamalar

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] i _ _

*Foreword *

It is a great honor and pleasure to write this foreword

message for this proceedings; because, I had attended this

seminar and witnessed the success of the World Environment

Day (WED) awareness campaign.

The WED is the biggest event and globally celebrated

on June 5 each year to promote awareness about preservation

of environment and to take positive actions. The WED is

engaging millions of people across the globe through events

and celebrated over 100 countries. Every year, participants,

several organizations, organize clean-up campaigns, art

exhibits, tree-planting, concerts, dance recitals, recycling

drives, social media campaigns and different contests with

various themes for preservation of environment. AIMST University, strongly belives in

the need of increasing understanding and creating more awareness among students sothat

they can appreciate the values of biodiversity and the clean environment.

First of all, I would like to thank all the invited speakers, delegates, young

researchers and participants of the ‘National Seminar on Sustainable Environment and

Health’ for their participation, and sharing their views and perspectives on environmental

issues and conservation.

Thirteen (13) leading and eminent researchers and environmentalists delivered

their talk on the various environmental issues important for sustainable development. The

seminar brought together the researchers, students, entrepreneurs those are working in the

areas of environment and health. National seminar provided a magnificent opportunity

for all the participants to interact with eminent colleagues. I wish to thank all the speakers

and participants, environmental NGOs, students from various schools and universities for

participating in the seminar and WED events. I also wish to thank all supporters for

supporting the seminar and events.

I am really happy to know that full-length articles received from the invited

speakers of the Seminar on Sustainable Environment and Health are being published in

this proceeding. I would record my special thanks to Professor Dr. K. Marimuthu, a

highly committed organizing Chairman, and Senior Associate Professor Dr. Subhash

Bhore, a leading Editor of this book for their efforts in bringing out this book to

document the conference and WED-2016 events. I also thank the purpose driven

organizing committee members and volunteers for their contribution and support.

I am very sure that content of this proceeding will serve as a reference to students,

researchers, scientists, public and all other stakeholders those have concern about


Thank you,

*Senior Professor Dr. M. Ravichandran *

[_*Chief Executive ][*& [ Vice-Chancellor, AIMST University, Malaysia _]]

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] ii


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Globally, World Environment Day (WED) is a great

annual event celebrated each year on June 5, to engage

millions of people from different countries to draw the

attention of several organizations and public to implement

some effective actions and create positive awareness to

preserve the environment and planet earth. This year’s

theme for WED was “Go Wild for Life” that highlights the

fight against the illegal trade in wildlife, which erodes

precious biodiversity and threatens the survival of

elephants, rhinos and tigers, as well as many other species.

This event is also helpful in encouraging to explore all

those species under threat and take action and help safeguard them for future generations. * *

To commemorate and celebrate the WED, AIMST University hosted a one day

seminar on[* *]Sustainable Environment and Health, planting trees, slogan writing

competition, environmental quiz, debate, trash to treasure – a innovation competition, and

cycling event. The main aim of these events was to create awareness about the global

environmental issues among school students, university students, staff, and common


Dato Dr. Leong Yong Kong, Exco Environment, Kedah Darul Aman, Malaysia

had officiated the opening ceremony of the seminar. In a keynote address, Prof. Sultan

Ismail Eco-science Research Foundation, India highlighted importance of the traditional

farming systems, the applications of vermin-compost and foliar sprays to control pests.

There were 13 invited speakers who delivered talks on various aspects of the

environmental challenges, conservation and natural farming systems. This proceeding is

the compilation of conference papers and WED events. However, four additional articles

submitted by respective authors are also added in this book.

I would like to express my sincere gratitude and thanks to Dato’ Seri Utama Dr. S.

Samy Vellu, Chancellor and Chairman, AIMST University and Senior Prof. Dr. M.

Ravichandran, Chief Executive and Vice-Chancellor of AIMST University, Malaysia for

their full support to organize this WED events. Specially, I wish to thank my colleague,

Senior Associate Professor Dr. Subhash Bhore for playing a major role in bringing out

this book to document the national conference and various events of WED-2016.

I would like to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to all the invited

speakers from various institutions and universities from India and Malaysia for sharing

their views by participating in the conference. Last but not least, I would like to thank

wholeheartedly to all the WED committee members for their commitment, cooperation

and support provided to execute various events.

Thank you,

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*Dr. K. Marimuthu *

[*Chairman WED-2016 Events, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic and International *]

_*Affairs, AIMST University, Malaysia* _

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] iii *Contents *

World Environment Day (WED 2016) Events Steering Committee …………………… i

Foreword ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. ii Preface …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. iii Contents ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. iv For Earth’s Sake

Sultan Ahmed Ismail …………………………………………………………………………………….. 1

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming: A New Avenue for Sustainable Agriculture

M. Aminur Rahman, Md. Shamim Parvez and Kasi Marimuthu ……………………….. 16

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environmental Forensic Studies

Narayanan Kannan …………………………………………………………………………………….. 31

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming: A Case in Paddy Farming in

Peninsular Malaysia

Zakirah Othman and Quamrul Hasan …………………………………………………………… 38

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia: A Protection to Public Health

Haslinda Mohd Anuar…………………………………………………………………………………. 51

The Echinoderm (Sea Cucumber) Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region: Emerging

Prospects, Potentials, Culture and Utilization

M. Aminur Rahman and Fatimah Md. Yusoff …………………………………………………. 60

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health

_Sridevi Chigurupati, Jahidul Islam Mohammad and Kesavanarayanan Krishnan _

Selvarajan …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 74

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios for Tracing Food Web Connectivity

Debashish Mazumder………………………………………………………………………………….. 89

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria and Crop Productivity

Umaiyal Munusamy ……………………………………………………………………………………. 95

World Soil Day: A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Global Sustainable Development

Subhash Janardhan Bhore …………………………………………………………………………. 107

Basics for Sustainable Environment: Reduce Wastage, Reuse, and Recycle

Rajesh Perumbilavil Kaithamanakallam, Samudhra Sendhil and Aarthi Rajesh.. 116

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] iv Natural Farming: Malaysian Farmers Experience

N V Subbarow ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 120

Abstracts ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 123

Appendices …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 129

Appendix 1: A Brief Biography of Speakers ………………………………………………… 129

Appendix 2: WED-2016 Events held at AIMST University …………………………… 137

Appendix 3: How you can help in saving the world? …………………………………….. 148

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] v

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[*“The earth, the air, the land and the water are not an *]

*inheritance from our fore fathers but on loan from our *

*children. So we have to handover to them at least as it *

[*was handed over to us.” *]

--- Mahatma Gandhi

[_ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; e-ISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 _] vi *Focus on Environment *

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P1-15 _]

[*For Earth’s Sake *]

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Sultan Ahmed Ismail

[_Ecoscience Research Foundation, 98, Baaz Nagar, 3/621 East Coast Road, Palavakkam, _]

[_ Chennai 600041, India; Phone No.: +91 9384898358; E mail: [email protected] _] _ _

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The dynamic nature of a soil is due to the tremendous activity of micro and macro organisms

supported by availability of organic matter. A vast number of organisms engineer a myriad of

biochemical changes as decay of organic matter takes place in the soil. Based on my continuous

research on earthworms made me write “[_earthworms are the pulse of the soil, healthier the _]

pulse, healthier the soil”. Fresh casts, urine, mucus and coelomic fluid which are rich in the

worm-worked soil and burrows act as stimulant for the multiplication of dormant

microorganisms in the soil and are responsible for constant release of nutrients into it, which then

facilitates root growth and a healthy appropriate sustainable rhizosphere. Compost and

vermicompost as well as a number of foliar sprays such as Panchagavya, FEM and Gunapaselam

along with pest repellents can be a healthy choice for a sustainable ecosystem which shall be

environmentally compatible and economically viable.

Keywords: Compost; foliar sprays; organic farming; soils; sustainability; vermitech;

vermicompost; vermiwash

Soil is a living dynamic system


whose functions are mediated by diverse

living organisms which in agriculture

The dynamic nature of a soil is due to the





tremendous activity of micro and macro

conservation. Unfortunately, in today’s

organisms supported by availability of

chemical agriculture importance is shown on

organic matter. It is this life in the soil that

soil fertility and not on the holistic soil

lends its name to soil as “living soil”. A vast






number of organisms engineer a myriad of

sustainable mechanism to the soil to sustain

biochemical changes as decay of organic

its “living” fabric of nature.

matter takes place in the soil. Among the

Among the myriad of soil organisms,

organisms, which contribute to soil health,

earthworms are one of the most vital

the most important are the earthworms.

components of the soil biota in terms of soil

Based on my continuous research on

formation and maintenance of soil structure

earthworms made me write “[_earthworms are _]

and fertility. They are extremely important

_the pulse of the soil, healthier the pulse, _

in soil formation, principally through

healthier the soil”.

activities in consuming organic matter,

fragmenting it and mixing it intimately with

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail mineral particles to form water stable

potted plants to their residences especially

aggregates (Ismail, 2005). During feeding,

into the cooler parts of India.

earthworms promote microbial activity by

Earthworms are one of the chief

several orders of magnitude, which in turn

components of the soil biota in terms of soil

accelerate the formation of organic matter as

formation and maintenance of soil structure





and fertility. They are extremely important

decomposers and mineralisers in the detritus

in soil formation, principally through







activities in consuming organic matter,

decomposition. Fresh casts, urine, mucus

fragmenting it and mixing it intimately with

and coelomic fluid which are rich in the

mineral particles to form water stable

worm-worked soil and burrows act as

aggregates (Ismail, 2005). During feeding,






earthworms promote microbial activity by

microorganisms in the soil and are

several orders of magnitude, which in turn

responsible for constant release of nutrients

also accelerate the rates of break down and

into it, which then facilitates root growth

stabilization of humic fractions or organic

and a sustainable rhizosphere.

matter. Microorganisms are the ultimate

Darwin’s pioneering work on

decomposers and mineralisers in the detritus

earthworms ( _The Formation of Vegetable _







Mould through the Action of Worms)





published by John Murray in October 1881

facilitators for the dormant microorganisms

remains one of the pioneering works of

in soils providing them with organic carbon,

modern science, though ancient Indian

optimum temperature, moisture and pH in

literature has often quoted the benefits of






earthworms. As one who pioneered the

Microorganisms are excreted in their casts

culture of local earthworms _Perionyx _

and also harbored in the drilospheres. Fresh

excavatus and Lampito mauritii in India and

casts, urine, mucus and coelomic fluid

also extensively worked with _Eudrilus _

which are rich in the worm-worked soil and

eugeniae after it was introduced by







Professor Dr. Radha D Kale of University of

multiplication of dormant microorganisms in

Agriculture Sciences, Hebbal, Bengaluru,

the soil and are responsible for constant

into India; my students and I have done

release of nutrients into it, which then

immense research. I do agree that I have not

facilitates root growth and a healthy

worked with Eisenia fetida or Eisenia

appropriate sustainable rhizosphere.







Though more than 3500 species of

information about them.

earthworms are in the world with India

having about 500 species in its diversity, it


is easier to recognize earthworms based on

their ecological strategies… that is based on

Earthworms belong to the order Chaetopoda

the nature of the position in the ecosystem

under Class Oligochaeta, Phylum Annelida

(Figure 1). Based on this classification three





broad based categories are listed though

earthworms mostly are Megascolecids,

there are possibilities of some trespass

though Lumbricids also coexist. Several

between these categories.

European Lumbricid earthworms found their

The surface feeders are the epigeic

way into India when the British brought

worms. These worms may or may not

consume soil. The Indian blue _Perionyx _

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail excavatus, P. sansibaricus are excellent

A healthy soil (in Indian condition)

earthworms. Eudrilus eugeniae and _Eisenia _

should at least have 5% organic matter, but

fetida, though exotic, also belong to the






epigeic category. The anecis or the

revolution are poor with a national average






of about 0.5%.

predominantly vertical burrows in the soil.

A good healthy soil generally should

Lampito mauritii is an anecic so is

have air (about 25%), water (about 25%),

Lumbricus terrestris


Europe. The

organic matter consisting of humus, roots,

endogeics are the predominant horizontal

organisms (about 5%) and mineral matter








Soils exposed to the veracities of

biodiversity of soil organisms as well;

nature and without mulch may not harbor

enabling soil as a living “organism”.

epigeics. The anecic are those who have

The burrows created mostly by the

regained the mastery of aestivation or

anecic earthworms are called as drilospheres

summer sleep. A good aerated soil with

(Figure 2), though other organisms may also

optimal conditions generally harbor all these

contribute to them. These act as the

three types of earthworms.

circulatory and respiratory systems of the


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Figure 1: Earthworms based on their ecological strategies.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail

_ _

Figure 2: Drilospheres created by anecic earthworms.


*microorganisms *

*in *

*compost *

*and *

*vermicompost *

About 500 species of earthworms are found

in India. Earthworms that are brought in

The process of composting, although shows

from other countries are called exotic.

the occurrence of different microorganisms

Internationally 3 species of earthworms have

such as bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes,

largely been used for vermicomposting, they





being Eisenia fetida and Eudrilus eugeniae,

microorganisms involved in the nitrogen

which are exotic, and Perionyx excavatus,

cycle; succession is shown in the quantity of

which is endemic. Local species of

microbes depending upon the nature of the

earthworms used for vermicomposting in

substrate, the age of the compost, the

India generally are Perionyx excavatus and

ambience created by the existing microbes

_Lampito mauritii. _

to its successors and also the physical and

chemical characteristics.

*Succession of microorganisms in the *

The majority of the microorganisms

*process of composting and the quality of *

in the initial stages of the composting are the

heterotrophic bacteria, which rely on the

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail oxidation of the large amount of organic

from the initial phase of composting till

carbon. It reduces during the thermophilic

vermicompost. This is due to the increased

phase till the formation of the biodung

phosphatase activity in vermicompost as






earthworm casts and feces exhibit higher

vermicompost due to the passage of the

phosphatase activity (Mansdell et al., 1981

material through the earthworm and the

and Satchel and Martin, 1984). It is also

presence of the assimilable C, in the gut and

observed that PO4 production shows a

the cast of the earthworms (Lavelle _et al., _

decline at about the 21st day of composting


which correlates with the reports of Gupta

The role of microorganisms in the

(1999) that high NH +

4 concentration retards

nitrogen cycle is very prominent. There is

P fixation. Phosphate solubilizers also

increased presence of ammonifiers in the

steadily increase throughout the process. So

initial stage of composting, which correlates

in terms of succession ammonifiers which

with the high amount of protein degradation

are the major organic N decomposers are

and the microbial contribution to reduce

succeeded by the nitrifiers and phosphate

C:N. Nitrifiers however increase from the


initial to the final stages. The products of the

Oxidation of sulfur and sulfate

ammonifiers create an environment for the

compounds is elaborated by aerobic obligate

multiplication of nitrifiers which utilize

autotrophs. Thiobacillus thiooxidans and

ammonia and convert it to nitrite and nitrate.

_Thiobacillus _

_thioparus, _



To substantiate this extra-cellular ammonia

vermicompost attribute to the reason for

nitrogen decreases steadily from the initial

vermicompost being capable of ameliorating

higher values during the entire composting

sodic soils. The population density of the

process. The ammonification process is

actinomycetes increases from the initial

reported to increase due to high temperature

phase of composting till the maturation

(Prasad and Powar, 1997).

phase except for a period of decline in the

Nitrification potential as indicated by

thermophilic phase.

NO2- N decreases with composting time.

Actinomycetes occur after readily

The NO2 production drops and stabilizes to

available substrate disappears in the early

low levels during the later stages of

stages and colonize in the humification stage

composting till no further decomposition

as the compost reaches maturity. It is also

can take place, as the C: N ratio gets

found that the optimum temperature of

stabilized (Tiquia et al., 2002).

actinomycetes is 40-50o C, which is also the

The NO3 production increases till

temperature for lignin degradation in

about the 14th day of composting thereafter

compost (Tuomela et al., 2000).

declining till the 35th day. This drop could

Fungal density decreases as the

be due to high temperature, as nitrification is




inhibited by high temperature and could also

Mucoraceous group of fungi commonly

indicate microbial immobilization. The

referred to as sugar fungi are observed in the

dominance of the extra-cellular production

initial and early phases of composting.

of NO3 on the worm worked vermicompost

Species of Aspergillus dominate and are

could be the result of the enhanced nitrifier

responsible for major degradation of initial


organic carbon as they are known to

Amount of phosphate in compost

elaborate cellullases and hemicellulases. A











vermicompost records a steady increase

predominantly found to colonize the

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail compost only towards the end when

 _Aspergillus flavipes _

complex organic matter is biodegraded.

Aspergillus nidulans

The thermophilic fungi record an

 _Aspergillus niger _

increase in density and diversity during the

Aspergillus ochraceus

thermophilic phase and these are known to

Aspergillus tamarii

bring about degradation of cellulose, lignin

 _Chrysosporium pannorum _

and pectin at a faster rate in conjunction

 _Emericella nidulans _

with high temperature. The presence of

Dreschslera australiensis

Trichoderma viridae and _Trichoderma _

Fusarium oxysporum

harzianum, both potential biocontrol agents,

during the composting process and to a

Monilia sitophila

larger magnitude in the vermicompost is

Penicillium citrinum


Penicillium oxalicum

The density and diversity of algae

 _Mucor racemosus _


progressively and maximum

Trichoderma viride

recorded in the vermicompost. Of special

significance are the presences of algae such




as Oscillatoria spp . _, _Anabaena spp _. _, and


Nostoc spp. which are known to enhance

_ _

soil fertility. For information of those using

 _Cladophora _ spp _. _






 _Oscillatoria _ spp _. _

compost/vermicompost/in-situ composting

 _Anabaena anomala _

the material generally has the following

 _Anabaena ambigua _




 _Arthrospira _ spp _. _

Dhakshayani, 2008). Generally microbial

 _Westiellopsis prolifiea _

population in compost is reported to be ―

 _Nostoc _ spp _. _

heterotrophic bacteria:463.11±162.26 × 106;

 _Protococcus _ spp _. _

fungi population: 13.46 ± 2.07 × 104; and

 _Cladophora _ spp. _ _

actinomycetes: 44.05 ± 17.11 × 106.

 _Schizothrix _ spp _. _

 _Chaetonema _ spp _. _



_Stigonema _ spp _. _

_ _

Though we have identified presence

_Bacillus _ spp. _ _

of actinomycetes in earthworm casts in our

_Pseudomonas _ spp. _ _





_Serratia _ spp. _ _

laboratories have identified species of

_Klebsiella _ spp. _ _

actinomycetes in castings (Kumar _et al. _,

 _Enterobacter _ spp. _ _

2012. Sreevidya _et al. _, 2016). Association of

actinomycetes confers many advantages to




plants like production of antibiotics,





_ _

siderophores and phosphate solubilization,

Absidia spp _. _

protects plant against biotic and abiotic

 _Rhizopus stolonifer _


Aspergillus flavus

  • *

 _Aspergillus fumigatus _

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 6

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail *ACTINOMYCETES *


1) which invariably are associated with plant



_ _

There are about 3 isomers of indole

Streptomyces spp. _ _

compounds separated in Vermiwash, 2-(4-

Streptosporangium spp. _ _

methylphenyl) indolizine is an alkaloid

Saccharoployspora spp. _ _

which has a significant role in plant growth

Actinomadura spp. _ _

promotion. At retention time of 19.70 min

Nocardia spp. _ _

capric acid was separated, which is a fatty

Nocardiopsis spp. _ _

acid, obtained from the castings of

earthworms which is also reported to have a

Planobispora spp. _ _

significant role in plant growth promotion in

Micromonospora spp. _ _

lower concentrations (Imaishi and Petkova-

Actinomadura spp. _ _

Andonova, 2007). Maleic acid which was

Microbispora spp. _ _

identified is a well-established plant growth

Thermobifida spp. _ _

promoter (Delhaize et al., 1993). Methyl 2-

4(-tert-butylphenoxy) acetate belongs to the

We may have apprehensions on other

ring-substituted phenoxy aliphatic acids

technologies, but each has been time tested

generally exhibiting a strong retarding effect






on abscission in turn promote plant growth.

practitioners have forced their technology on

Vermiwash by its instinctive quality might

anyone or talk evil of the other. To be

probably promote humification, increased

organic is to first “decolonize our minds”.

microbial activity to produce the plant

Biodynamic farming does suggest several

growth promoting compounds and enzyme

components of the BD category. One of

production (Haynes and Swift, 1990). All

their excellent tools is the biodynamic

the compounds present in vermiwash (Table

chromatography. We have applied this on

1) may not individually help in plant growth

analysis of composts from several sources

but perhaps act synergistically along with

and have been a good functional tool.

the beneficial soil microbes found in

Thanks to Dr. Dhakshayani for trying this


for her research programme (presented in

Experiments applying Vermiwash

2007. submitted 2008). This technique did

with Panjagavya etc. by Thangaraj (2006)

reveal that the vermicompost prepared by

on plants and their chromosomes have

the endemic (local) earthworms’ _P. _

shown significant results of enhanced xylem

excavatus and L. mauritii which we call as

vessels (Figure 4) and no chromosomal

vermitech is indeed superior to that

damage; and these can be prepared by

produced by exotic (foreign) earthworms

farmers in their farms without paying

(Figures 3A & B). There is no doubt about


it. But at the same time there is no adverse

In organic farming practice we do

information about compost by exotic

not nurse the plant, we nurse the soil. The


soil in turn promotes its group of biotic

Most foliar sprays especially the

elements who churn the nutrients as desired

organic ones have several components

by the plant. Recently (2016) yet another

similar to plant growth promoter substances

student of mine Ramalakshmi has come out

in them. Vermiwash is one such excellent

with a unique medium to multiply

liquid fertiliser (Ismail, 2005). Studies in our

microorganisms by the farmer in non-sterile

laboratory by Sheik Ali (2009) have

non-laboratory conditions which will enable

revealed the presence of substances (Table

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail Figure 3: A & B) Biodynamic chromatograms of vermicompost from earthworms.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 8

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail Table 1: Components of Vermiwash.

*GC *

*Molecular *

*Retention *

*Chemical *

*CAS registry *

*No Compound *

*Weight *

*Time *

*Formula *

*Number *

[*(g/mol) *]

[*(min) *]


2- (4-methyl phenyl) indolizine






Decanoic acid, ethyl ester


















Pentadioic acid, dihydrazide









Methyl 2-(4-tert- butyl



phenoxy) acetate*





  • *

Figure 4: Anatomical changes in xylem vessels; C: control; V: vermiwash; P: Panchagavya; VP: combination of vermiwash and Panchagavya.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 9

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail a farmer to bioremediate the soil without

There are several such practices that today

industrial intervention. She has assured to

are classified as alternative systems of

share the technology freely with farmers’

farming in contrast to the conventional

after her thesis defense.

farming alias-chemical farming. These

Phytonutrients, such as polyphenols

alternative systems are named as non-

and antioxidants, protect both people and

poisonous farming, biodynamic farming,

plants. Several insecticides, herbicides, and

permaculture, natural farming, low external

fungicides actually block a plant’s ability to

input farming, eco-farming, biological





farming, or just organic farming. Such

compounds. In a study of antioxidants in

systems consider soil health as their

organic and conventionally grown fruits,

prerequisite. In organic farming apart from





the use of manure/compost for soils,

concentrations of vitamin C, vitamin E, and

botanical extracts for protection from pests,






bio-foliar sprays, native seed wealth,

(Coghlan, 2001). It appears that organically

biodiversity, mixed cropping, crop rotation,

grown fruits develop more antioxidants as a

gender participation, and associating animal

defense and repair mechanism against






insects when grown without the use of

components. Foliar sprays like vermiwash


and Panchagavya have proved to be very





effective as excellent liquid sprays on any

technology especially after the green

crop. Traditional wisdom advocates the use

revolution have ecological effects on soil

of cow dung and cow’s urine for manure and

organisms that can affect higher plants and

pest control. Today there is an enormous

animals, including man. Concentrating just

demand for organic food throughout the

on productivity has robbed human care for

world. Organically grown tea, coffee, spices,

the soil.

flowers, fruits and several other end

Traditional songs in Tamil state that

products are in demand overseas. Organic

in a plant, especially in cereals, “the roots

food provides wholesome meal including

are for the soil, the stems for the cattle, and

essentials like Salicylic Acid, which is the

the pinnacles for human consumption”.

precursor of Aspirin.

Following the holistic practice of organic

farming takes care of the soil which in turn


takes care of the plant and not as in chemical


farming where we may tend to ignore the


soil and take care of the plant. A plant taken

care, nursed and nourished by the soil has


excellent potential and potency for the

consumer (Ismail, 2005).

Worm worked soils have burrows formed by

Though animal wastes are largely

the earthworms. Bacteria richly inhabit these






burrows, also called as the drilospheres.

intensive farming activities have eliminated

Water passing through these passages

the need of animals on farm.

washes the nutrients from these burrows to

Organic farming is not a system of

the roots to be absorbed by the plants. This

farming but a culture by itself. It is not

principle is applied in the preparation of

addition of manure or botanical extracts that

vermiwash. Vermiwash is a very good foliar

enables organic farming, but a way of life.


ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 10

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail Vermiwash units can be set up either

vermiwash is collected. The tap is then

in barrels or in buckets or even in small

closed and the suspended pot is refilled with

earthen pots. It is the principle that is

5 litres of water that evening to be collected

important. The procedure explained here is

again the following morning. Dung pats and

for setting up of a 250 litre barrel. An empty

hay may be replaced periodically based on

barrel with one side open is taken. On the

need. The entire set up may be emptied and

other side, a hole is made to accommodate

reset between 10 and 12 months of use.

the vertical limb of a ‘T’ jointed tube in a

Vermiwash is diluted with water

way that about half to one inch of the tube

(10%) before spraying. This has been found

projects into the barrel. To one end of the

to be very effective on several plants. If

horizontal limb is attached a tap. The other

need be vermiwash may be mixed with

end is kept closed. This serves as an

cow’s urine and diluted (1 litre of

emergency opening to clean the ‘T’ jointed

vermiwash, 1 litre of cow’s urine and 8 litres

tube if it gets clogged.

of water) and sprayed on plants to function

as an effecting foliar spray and pest

*Setting up of a vermiwash unit *

repellent. Instead of a drum the same can

also be prepared in plastic buckets or even in

The entire unit is set up on a short pedestal

flower pots as containers.

made of few bricks to facilitate easy

collection of vermiwash. Keeping the tap


open, a 25 cm layer of broken bricks or

pebbles is placed. A 25 cm layer of coarse

[*Requirements: *]

sand then follows the layer of bricks. Water

Biogas slurry or cow dung

5 kg

is then made to flow through these layers to

Cow’s urine

3 litres

enable the setting up of the basic filter unit.

Cow’s milk

2 litres

On top of this layer is placed a 30 to 45 cm

Curd from cow’s milk

2 litres

layer of loamy soil. It is moistened and into

Ghee from cow’s butter

1 litre

this is introduced about 50 numbers each of

Sugarcane juice

3 litres

the surface (epigeic) and sub-surface

Tender coconut water

3 litres

(anecic) earthworms. Cattle dung pats and


12 numbers

hay is placed on top of the soil layer and

gently moistened. The tap is kept open for

First mix cow dung with ghee and

the next 15 days. Water is added every day

small quantity of cow’s urine. Leave this

to keep the unit moist.

dough for 3 days. Then place this in a broad

On the 16th day, the tap is closed

mouthed mud pot or a cement tank and add

and on top of the unit a metal container or

the remaining ingredients. Mix well by hand

mud pot perforated at the base as a sprinkler

and without closing with lid keep in shade.

is suspended. Five (5) litres of water (the

Daily morning and evening mix well by

volume of water taken in this container is

hand. In about 10 days panchagavya will be

one fiftieth of the size of the main container)

ready. If you mix it daily with hand or with

is poured into this container and allowed to

a wooden ladle it would keep well for a

gradually sprinkle on the barrel overnight.

month. For use prepare a 3-5% solution.

This water percolates through the compost,

Spray as foliar spray only in the morning or

the burrows of the earthworms and gets


collected at the base. The tap of the unit is

opened the next day morning and the

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 11

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail *GUNAPASELAM *

ml in 10 liters of water and spray or mix 10

liters in water for one acre.

Requirements:[* *]

Fish (unused raw parts) – 1 kg


Jaggery- 1 kg

Water – 5 litres

Organic agriculture is defined as “a holistic

Container – 10 litre

food production management system, which

promotes and enhances agro-ecosystem

Mix first two in container. Cover

health, including biodiversity, biological

with gunny or cloth tightly, prevent from

cycles and soil biological activity. It

flies. Second day add about 5 litres of water

emphasizes the use of management practices

and mix well. Mix well 3 times a day for

in preference to the use of off-farm inputs,

first 5 days. Leave undisturbed then for 10

taking into account that regional conditions

days. Decant, dissolve 100 to 150 ml of this

require locally adapted systems. This is

in 10 litres of water and use as soil

accomplished by using, where possible,

conditioner as well as foliar spray.





Concentrate can be stored for three months

methods, as opposed to using synthetic

materials, to fulfill any specific function


within the system.” (FAO/WHO Codex

Alimentarius Commission).

Requirements:[* *]

Through its holistic nature, organic

 Pumpkin

3.0 kg

farming integrates wild biodiversity, agro-

 Banana

3.0 kg

biodiversity and soil conservation, and takes

 Papaya

3.0 kg

low-intensity, extensive farming one step

 Molasses or Jaggery 3.0 kg

further by eliminating the use of chemical






 Eggs



modified organisms (GMOs), which is not


only an improvement for human health, but

 Water

10 liters (non-

also for the fauna and flora associated with


the farm and farm environment. Organic

farming enhances soil structures, conserves

25-liter plastic container with a lid

water and ensures the conservation and

sustainable use of biodiversity. Agricultural

Cut the three vegetables into small

contaminants such as inorganic fertilizers,

pieces. Transfer these pieces into the





container – mix Molasses or Jaggery (non-

conventional agriculture are a major concern

chlorinated) in little water and add – to this

all over the world. Eutrophication, the

add 10 liters of water – break and add the 5

suffocation of aquatic plants and animals

eggs into it. Mix all the contents. Leave the

due to rapid growth of algae, referred to as

container well closed with the lid. Open lid

“algal blooms”, are literally killing lakes,

after ten days there should be white foam on

rivers and other bodies of water. Persistent

top, if not there add some more Molasses or

herbicides and insecticides can extend

Jaggery. Check after 20 days, again after 30

beyond target weeds and insects when

days. Mix well after 30 days and leave it

introduced into aquatic environments. These

closed. After a total of 45 days decant the

solution this is Farmer’s EM.

chemicals have accumulated up the food

Dissolve 200

chain whereby top predators often consume

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail toxic dosages. Organic agriculture as

pesticides are essential for modern farming






and to feed the world’s population, when this

environmental balance and has none of these

isn’t true. Pesticides weaken the ecosystem

or other such deleterious effects on the

which had sustained human agriculture for


thousands of years, damaging soil microbes

Pesticides have been in use in

and eliminating beneficial insects and

agriculture since Second World War and,

predators. In addition, pests continually

from the very beginning, there have been

mutate to become pesticide resistant.

concerns about the commercialization of

Despite a 10-fold increase in insecticide use

chemical pesticides. Rachel Carson’s book

in recent years, studies have shown a

Silent Spring” published in 1964 brought

proliferation in types of pests by 30%.

out the scientific certainties of the impacts

Governments are marking heavy

of pesticides on environment. The very first

budgets towards medical expenditures, when

insecticide of World War-II vintage, DDT

concentrating on healthy food can be an

was banned in the developed world in the

answer. “Prevention is better than cure” and

1970s but continued to be used in India till

hence the policy of the Governments

the 1990s. The infamous Bhopal tragedy of

towards agriculture should be suitably

1984 in India was an eye opener to a larger

modified to promote as well as protect non-

section of people in India and abroad.

chemical farming. The question frequently

According to research on health

asked is as to where to get the quantity of

disorders resulting from petroleum-based

manure. The answer here lies in composting.

chemicals used in consumer products and

Large quantities of organic wastes from

job environments are available from the link

agriculture as well as market wastes can

http://www.chem-tox.com/. Petroleum based

easily be converted to manure, without

chemicals are being found to cause

much investment costs. This also promotes

significant attritional effects to the nervous

local based industry for composting.

system and immune system after prolonged

Organic foliar sprays as well as pest

exposure. Illnesses identified in the medical

repellents can also be prepared at the local

research include adult and child cancers,

level. It can also generate opportunities for a

numerous neurological disorders, immune

large number of youth and women at rural

system weakening, autoimmune disorders,


asthma, allergies, infertility, miscarriage,

Organic agriculture contributes to

and child behavior disorders including

food and environment security by a

learning disabilities, mental retardation,

combination of many features, most notably

hyperactivity and ADD (attention deficit


disorders). Petroleum based chemicals are

 increasing yields in low-input areas.

believed to cause these problems by a

 conserving biodiversity and natural

variety of routes including – impairing

resources on the farm and in

proper DNA (Gene) expression, weakening

surrounding area.

DNA Repair, accelerating gene loss,

 increasing income by reducing input

degeneration of the body’s detoxification


defenses (liver and kidneys) as well as

 recycling organic waste for manure

gradual weakening of the brain’s primary




defense – (the Blood Brain Barrier).


For nearly five decades, the public

 boosting micro-enterprises and rural

and farmers have been told that chemical


ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 13

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail

 protecting the health of the farmers

_eugeniae _

Kinberg [_) _]

_on _

_endemic _

and the consumers.

_earthworms _

[_(Perionyx _]

_excavatus _

 producing safe and varied food.

Perrier _ and Lampito mauritii _ Kinberg [_) _]

 being sustainable in the long term.

_based _

_on _

_microbial _

_community _

structure. Ph.D., Thesis, University of

Organic agriculture should therefore be

Madras, India.

an integral part of any agricultural policy

aiming for food security, and it is time that

Gupta, P.K. (2001). * * _Handbook of soil, _

the Government takes positive action in this

fertilizer and manure. Pub. Agro


Botanica, India, p 258-307. * *

Healthy soils support healthy produce.

Personal observations and research have

Haynes, R.J. and Swift, R.S. (1990).

indicated that not just addition of organic

Stability of soil aggregates in relation

inputs but the presence of soil biota in the

to organic constituents and soil water

soil, in fact, enhances the produce in its

content. _J. Soil Sci. _ 41, 73-83. * *

quantity and quality. Thus it is very much

confirmed that “[_earthworms are the pulse of _]

[*Imaishi, H. and Petkova-Andonova, M. *]

_the soil, healthier the pulse, healthier the _

(2007). * *




soil”. Let’s put our hands together for

CYP76B9, a cytochrome P450 from

earth’s sake






omega-hydroxylation of capric acid

and lauric acid. _Biosci. Biotechnol. _


Biochem. 71, 104-113. * *

Sincere thanks and acknowledge the

Ismail, S.A. (2005). * * The Earthworm Book.

contributions of all my students who built up

Other India Press, Goa, India, p. 101. * *

the entire theme of VERMITECH since

1978 to 2016. Most data here have been

Jeyaprakash, P. (2009). * * _Biocontrol of the _

quoted from the works of my former

[_white grub (Leucopholis coneophora) _]

research scholars whom I had supervised, Dr

[_in vegetable plantation – an applied _]





_biotechnological _



Ganesh, Dr Thangaraj, Mr. Sheik Ali, Mr. P

Dissertation. University of Madras,

Jeyaprakash and Ms. Ramalakshmi; and a


large number of practicing farmers, my

sincere thanks to all of them.

*Lavelle, P., Melendez, G., Pashanasi, B., *

Szott, L. and Schaefer, R. (1992a).










*Delhaize, E., Ryan, P.R. and Randall, P.J. *




(1993). Aluminum tolerance in Wheat

_Pontoscolex _


( Triticum aestivum L.) (II. Aluminum-

(Glossoscolecidae). Biol. Fertil. Soil

stimulated excretion of malic Acid

14, 49-53. * *

from root apices). Plant Physiology

103, 695-702. * *

*Lavelle, P., Blanchart, E., Martin, E., *

Spain, A.V. and Martin, S. (1992b). * *

*Dhakshayani, *

*C. *



Impact of soil fauna on the properties

_earthworm interactions and impact of _

of soils in the humids tropics. In:

_the _

_exotic _

_earthworm _

[_(Eudrilus _]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 14

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

For Earth’s Sake Ismail Segoe S (ed) _Myths and sciences of _

Sheik, A. (2009). * * _Molecular studies in _

_soils of the tropics. Soil Sci Soc Am _

_identifying the potential of Vermiwash _

_Spec Publ. _ 29, 157–185. * *

– an organic liquid biofertilizer. MSc

Dissertation. University of Madras,

Parle, J.N. (1963a). [* *]Microorganisms in the


intestines of earthworms. _J. Gen _

_Microbiol. _ 31, 1-11. * *

Thangaraj, R. (2006). Studies on the





Parle, J.N. (1963b). [* *]A micribiological study

biofertilizers (vermiwash, effective

of earthworm casts. _J. Gen Microbiol, _




31, 13-22. * *

plants. Ph.D., Thesis, University of

Madras, India.

Prasad, R. and Power, F.J. (1997). * * _Soil _

fertility for sustainable agriculture.

*Tiquia, S.M., Wan, J.H.C. and Tam, *

Lewis Publishers. [* p 110-127*]. * *

N.F.Y. (2002). Microbial population

dynamics and enzyme activities during

*Priscilla *

J. (2006). _Studies on the _

composting. _Compost Science and _

[_“microbiogeocoenose” _]

_of _

Utilization, 10, 150–161. * *

_vermicompost and its relevance in soil _

health. Ph.D., Thesis, University of

*Tuomela, M., Vikman, M., Hatakka, A. *

Madras, India.

*and *

*Itavaara, *

*M., *


Biodegradation of lignin in a compost

Satchell, J.E. and Martin, K. (1984).

environment[*, *] a review. _Bioresource _

Phosphatase activity in earthworm


*72, *


faeces. Soil Biol. Biochem. 16, 191-

194. * *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 15

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P16-30 _]

[*Integrated Rice-Fish Farming: A New Avenue for Sustainable *]

*Agriculture *

  • *

[* M. Aminur Rahman1, *, Md. Shamim Parvez1 and Kasi Marimuthu2 *]

* *

[_1Laboratory of Marine Biotechnology, Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 _]

[_UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia; 2Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, _]

_AIMST University, 08100 Bedong, Kedah Darul Aman, Malaysia _

*Corresponding author; Email: [email protected] _] [_/ [email protected]


Rice and fish are the key components of global food security. They are the main protein sources

in the daily diets of around three billion peoples, especially in Asia. Integrated fish farming is a

technique of fish culture with other organisms i.e. plants or animals to get maximum output

through minimum input supply in a shorter time frame. The production of rice and fish do not

need to be integrated by always producing the two crops simultaneously, but may be done by

alternating production: rice can be grown in the rainy season and fish in the dry season, or the

other way round. In areas where rice production is not profitable in all seasons, fish production

forms an alternative source of income from the field. However, in order to meet the global de-

mand of food and nutrition for the increasing populations, there is therefore a need to increase

rice and fish production simultaneously. Integrated rice-fish farming can play an important role

in increasing food production as this system is better than rice monoculture in terms of resource

utilization, crop diversity, farm productivity in biomass or in economics, and both the quality and

quantity of the food products. Integration of fish in paddy fields is ecologically sound because

fish improves soil fertility by generating nitrogen and phosphorus. Fish also control weeds by

feeding on weed roots and offer an extra service by tilling the soil around the rice plants. The

fish feces are used as organic manure that provide essential nutrients required to grow healthy

rice plants. Furthermore, integrated rice and fish culture optimizes the benefits of scarce land and

water resources through complementary use, and exploits the synergies between fish and plant.

Hence, it could be concluded that[* *]integrated rice-fish farming can help the global communities

keep pace with the current demand for food authenticity through sustainable rice and fish pro-

duction in an ecofriendly environment.

  • *

Keywords[Environment; food authenticity; integrated farming; rice-fish; sustainability[ *]


world. Most information comes from Asian

  • *

countries, particularly Philippines, Indonesia

Rice-based fish farming is the main source

and Japan where traditional rice farming

of earning in many parts of the world, de-

methods have been refined over centuries.

spite it is not widely practiced around the

There is an estimated 81 million ha of irri-

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al gated rice lands worldwide, with an addi-practice began to receive attention in the

tional 11 million ha of flood prone land un-

1980s. However, the new technology was

der rice cultivation (Halwart and Gupta,

perceived to have potential for multiple en-

2004). Presently the system of rice-fish is

vironmental benefits in Asia. Integrated rice-

being practiced in Bangladesh, Cambodia,

fish farming is also being regarded as an im-

China (1.2 million ha), Egypt (173000 ha),

portant element of integrated pest manage-

Indonesia (138,000 ha), Republic of Korea,

ment (IPM) in rice crops (Halwart and Gup-

Madagascar (13,000 ha), Thailand (3 million

ta, 2004; Nabi, 2008). Moreover, fish plays

ha) and Vietnam (40,000 ha) (Halwart and

a significant role in controlling aquatic

Gupta, 2004). The practice supports a large

weeds, algae and snails, and hence, reduces

share of the rural population in South,

the need for chemical spray leading to bet-

Southeast and East Asia and in parts of West

ter farm economics withi n ecolog i-

Africa. In these places, rain-fed rice fields

call y-sound low -cos t, low -risk o p-

are designed to store water for extended pe-

tion for poor ri ce farmers in Bangl a-

riods, creating aquatic ecosystems with

des h and els ewhere. Thus, int egr a-

many similarities to natural floodplains

tion o f fis h wit h rice farm ing i m -

(BRKB, 2010). These floodplain habitats of

proves diversi fi cati on, intensification

rice are later stocked by fish and grown

and productivity of farms (Ahmed et al.,

throughout the wet season. Fishing from

2008; Berg, 2001). The multiple benefits of

these rice-based farming systems is often

the integration between rice and fish have

carried out on regular, occasional or part-

been globally documented and could be

time basis, making a significant contribution

summarized in enhancing farm productivity

to livelihoods of poor farmers. However,

either in biomass or in economics. Fish in

the input cost in terms of feed, labor and in-

rice field improves soil fertility through their

frastructure for rice-based fish farming is

organic waste. Many reports suggest that

oft en a barrier for poor and m arginal

integrated rice-fish farming is ecologically

farm ers. There exis t man y possibl e

sound because fish improves soil fertility by

suggestive approaches to overcome one or

generating nitrogen and phosphorus (Parvez

more such type of barriers, but all these are

_et al., _ 2006). More importantly, the integrat-

still in conceptual form. However, Apatani

ed rice-fish leads to the production of a more

farmers from Lower Subansiri district in

balanced diet (rice) as a main source of car-

Arunachal Pradesh, India have practiced a

bohydrate and fish which is an important

very unique traditional rice-based fish farm-

animal protein source required for the health

ing practice in their waterlogged rice-fields,

and well-being of rural households. The in-

which not only gives good economic return

tegration of aquaculture can increase rice

to support their families’ demands but also

yields by 8 to 15% with an additional aver-

exposes a very low-cost fish farming tech-

age fish production of 260 kg/ha (Lightfoot,

nology for the rest of the world (Saikia _et _

1992). Based on field surveys and studies, it

al., 2008).

has been observed that farmers’ households

Rice-based fish farming is the main

usually inclined to eat small fish than sell

source of earning in many parts of Asia. The

them in the market and hence, fish consump-

lands and water resources of many countries

tion contributes significantly in the nutrition

are not fully utilized; however, there exists

of children and lactating mothers to avoid

tremendous scopes for increasing fish pro-

child blindness as well as to reduce infant

duction by integrating aquaculture with ag-


riculture (Nhan et al., 2007). Earlier, this

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al Rice and fish have been essential

tion of fish in rice fields inspires the combi-

part of the life of Asian people from the pre-

nation of rice farming with fish to increase

historic time. In respects to Bangladesh, rice

productivity (Gurung and Wagle, 2005). It

is the main agricultural crop with an annual

has been found from several studies that

production of 29 million tons per year

rice-cum-fish culture becomes able to en-

(BRKB, 2010), while annual fish production

hance the net benefit by 64.4% and yield by

is 2.7 million tons (DoF, 2010). The demand

5% (Parvez et al., 2012). Therefore, it has

for rice and fish is constantly rising in Bang-

been evidenced that the rice-fish integration

ladesh with nearly three million people be-

is quite attractive both in environmental and

ing added each year to its population

economic point of view. Fish in rice-based

(Chowdhury, 2009). Nevertheless, integrat-

agriculture system can enhance income at a

ed rice-fish farming offers a solution to this

higher rate than crops alone thereby it can

problem by contributing to food and income.

 reduce poverty, malnutrition and

Although rice-fish technology has been


demonstrated successfully and a considera-

 reduce gap between supply vs de-

ble number of farmers have been trained

mand of food fish

through various projects. Traditionally wild

 lessen pressure on capture fisheries

fish have been harvested from rice fields,

 generate foreign exchange earnings

but the introduction of high yielding varie-

 provide employment and career op-

ties (HYV) of rice and accompanying pesti-


cides have reduced fish yields (Gupta et al.,

 provide additional food/alternative

2002). However, important changes have

income to fishermen and farmers

taken place through IPM that has reduced

 provide business & investment op-

the use of pesticides in rice fields (Berg,


2001; Lu and Li, 2006).

 control mollusks and insects which

  • *

are harmful to rice


  • *


Fish is the main source of animal protein,

  • *

providing an average of 8.4 g per day, or

[*a) Traditional practices: *]

13.3 % of the average per capita total intake

of protein (63 g) (BBS, 2011). Not only the

Integrated fish farming is a technique of fish

adequate supply of carbohydrate, but also

culture with other organisms (animal/s or

the supply of animal protein is significant

plant/s). More production can be achieved in

through rice-fish farming. Fish, particularly

rice-fish culture in comparison to the rice

small fish, are rich in micronutrients and vit-

culture alone. The history of Rice fish cul-

amins, and thus human nutrition can be

ture is quite old and first started in an an-

greatly improved through fish consumption

cient China about 200 years ago. In course

(Kunda _et al., _ 2008; Frei and Becker, 2005).

of time, this practice was introduced to In-

It can optimize the utilization of resources

donesia, Vietnam, Thailand, India, Bangla-

through the complementary use of land and

desh and many other countries of the world.

water (Giap _et al., _ 2005). Integrated rice-fish

Lately, azolla is cultured with rice-fish in

farming is also ecologically sound because

China. In traditional system, several small

fish can improve soil fertility by increasing

ditches were prepared in the rice field and

the availability of nitrogen and phosphorus

tree branches or bushes were placed for cre-

(Dugan et al., 2006[*)*]. The natural aggrega-

ating suitable artificial habitat to attract wild

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al fishes (Figure 1). Sometimes fry of _Cyprinus _

carpio was stocked. Production was much

Concurrent rice-fish farming is generally

low and it was about 50kg/ha.

practiced during wet (aman) season in mod-

erate to low paddy fields where water log-

[*b) Modern practices *]

ging exists for 4-5 months naturally (Fig. 3).

Rearing of fish is possible by this way until

Since nineties, several NGOs have been

rice plantation in the next season. Carp and

working on rice fish culture and both nurse-

barb species (either singly or with different

ry and table fish are produced through these

combinations and ratios) are suitable for

techniques. Prawn species _Macrobrachium _

stocking but grass carp ( _Ctenopharyngodon _

rosenbergii is now also stocked for more

idella) can also be stocked. In case of grass

profit and diversified product. Major fish

carp stocking, precaution must be taken so

species are used Labeo rohita (rui), _Catla _

that this fish cannot eat young paddy.

catla (Catla), Cirrhina mriga la (Mrigel),

Cyprinus carpio (Common carp), Hy-

*ii. Alternative culture system *

pophthalmichthys molitrix (silver carp), Ti-

lapia sp. (Tilapia), Puntius gonionotus (Thai

In alternative culture system (Figure 4),

barb) and M. rosenbergii (giant fresh water

fishes are stocked in the paddy fields after

prawn). The different fish species, suitable

harvesting rice from the land. Rearing of

and practicing nowadays in rice-fish integra-

fishes up to 6-8 months (until plantation for

tion, are shown in Figure 2. In this system,

the next crop season) is possible in this sys-

the production of fish is much higher than

tem. Carp and barb species are suitable but

traditional system which is about 200 kg/ha

grass carp ( Ctenopharyngodon idella) can


also be stocked as a candidate in this com-

Fish culture with rice can be practiced in

posite culture system.

two ways-

_i. _

Concurrent system – culture of rice-


fish together

_ii. _

Alternative system – Fish culture af-

Management activities for fish culture in

ter harvesting rice

rice fields include site selection, developing

infrastructure, shading/sheltering, stocking,

*i. Concurrent systems *

  • *

  • *

Figure 1: Pictures showing traditional system of rice-fish culture.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al

* *

Puntius gonionotus[* *]

Clarias batrachus

Oreochromis niloticus

* *

* *

* *

* *

* *

* *

_Labeo rohita _

* *

_Cyprinus carpio _

_Labeo calbasu _

* *

* *

* *

Cirrhinus mrigala

Channa striatus

Anabas testudineus

* *

* *

Figure 2: Pictures showing different cultivable fish species for rice-fish integration.

Figure 3: Pictures showing concurrent culture system of fish in rice fields.

and feeding, water quality control, harvest-

[*a) Site selection *]

ing and restocking. Practices used for select-

ing fish species as well as number of fishes

Water holding capacity of the selected plot’s

to be stocked depending on the locations and

soil must be good enough so that soil can

availability of fish species.

hold water easily. Loamy or clay-loamy

soils are suitable for rice fish culture. Select-

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al ed plot should be low land and should con-1.0 m wide. Ideally, no part of the paddy

tain water naturally for 7-10 months but

should be more than 10.0 m away from the

must be secured from flooding.

trench. To maximize rice production, the

trench area should not be more than 10% of

[*b) Developing infrastructure *]

rice plot area. Adequate water should be

Traditional rice paddies normally require

available to maintain a depth of 10 to 15 cm

modification for concurrent culture of fish.

in planted areas with rice once fish have in-

One important modification is the deepened

troduced. This ditch will serve as shelter

part of the paddy field to serve as a fish shel-

during hot season and make the harvesting

ter and harvest area (Figure 5). The depend-

easier. Several canals should be dug con-

ed areas are called trenches, canals, channels

necting ditch for free movement of fishes

or sumps. Construction and placement may

(Figure 6). Enough space must be left from

vary, but these deepened areas provide sev-

land boundary so that dyke would not be

eral critical elements for successful rice-fish

broken. Ditch can be excavated in different


positions of the plot; some models are

 Refuge when the water level is low-

shown in Figure 6.


* *

 Passage ways for fish to find food

[*c) Sheltering for prawn *]

 Easier harvest of fish when the pad-

dy is drained.

In prawn culture, it is essential to provide

some sort of substances which will serve as

At least a single ditch must be excavated

shelter for prawn (http://en.bdfish.org/2010).

in the rice fields. Ditch or trenches should be

As prawn change its shell as growth advanc-

about 0.5 m to 1.0 m water depth and at least

es (i.e. molting), it remains very

  • *

* *

* *

Figure 4: Pictures showing alternative culture system of fish in rice _ _ fields.

_ _

Figure 5: Pictures showing preparation of set-up for the rice-fish integrated plot.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 21

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al

* *

* *

* *

* *

* *

* *

Figure 6: Pictures showing different canaling systems for fish and prawn in rice field.

[*e) Rice plot preparation *]

susceptible to attack by other animals during

molting period. Substances like coconut

Border, dyke of the land needs to be con-

branches, palm leafs or other tree branches

structed (if necessary) and weeds must be

are used in the water for sheltering of

controlled and excess bottom mud should be

prawns (Figure 7).

removed (Figure 9). Predatory or unwanted

fish species or other animals will be re-

moved from the culture plot. Lime (1

kg/decimal; 2-3kg/decimal for red soil) and

fertilizers (usually cow dung, urea and TSP)

should be applied at a proper dose.

  • *

Figure 7: Pictures showing shelter made

for fish and prawn in rice field.

[*d) Shading *]

Shading is essential during high temperature

* *

and excess rainfall to save stocked species

Figure 8: _ _ Pictures showing shad set-up for

from unfavorable condition. Bamboo splits

fish and prawn in rice field ditch.

made mat, coconut or palm branch, cultiva-

tion of vegetables on rack on dyke (Figure 8)

[*f) Nursery program in the rice fields *]







(http://en.bdfish.org/2010). * *

It is an optional measure to prepare nursery

* *

area for temporary rearing of prawn or

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al shrimp PL. Around 10-15% area of the total

Prawn PL needs to be stocked during even-

field can be used as nursery (Fig. 10).

ing as they are more sensitive than the fin

Nursery is often referred to as “Pocket

fish fry that can tolerate sudden changes in

Gher”. Generally, shrimp or prawns PL are

temperature and dissolve oxygen level in

reared in the nursery for 20-25 days. Stock-

water (Figure 11). If they are stocked during

ing density should be 1500-2000 PL (1.5-2

evening, the released PL will get more time







at night to adapt with the environment.


Stocking density will be 10000-15000 PL/

hectare area (http://en.bdfish.org/2010). * *

[*g) Stocking of fish fry/fingerlings/prawn *]

In case of finfish, fry can be stocked in

*PL in rice fields *

the morning or in the afternoon (Figure 11).

Figure 9: Pictures showing preparation of rice-fish plots.

Figure 10: Pictures showing nursery of fish and prawn PL in rice fields. * *

  • *

  • *

  • *

Figure 11: Stocking of fish fingerlings and prawn PL in rice plots.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 23

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al Stocking density will be maintained at 20-25

pond areas. Fish can be stocked at rates of

individuals/decimal for monoculture de-

0.25−1 fish/m2. In Cambodia, for example,

pending on the level of water and related

stocking rate is usually maintained at 2,500

factors. In case of mixed or polyculture,

common carp, 1,250 silver barb and 1,250

stocking density should be maintained at 20

tilapias per hectare. Predatory fish, particu-

individuals / decimal. Stocking size should

larly snakehead, should be absent from the

be 5-8 cm depending on the types of fish

system when fish seed is introduced. If

species. One thing should be kept in mind

available and economic, feed supplements

that it would not be very wise decision to

such as duckweed, termites, earthworms,

stock prawn and other bottom dweller fin

and rice bran can be supplied. Similar har-

fish species together as they can make com-

vesting methods as for rice field fisheries

petition each other for food and space.

can be used. Harvests usually include a per-

centage of wild fish that have entered into

[*h) Management of rice field wild fisheries *]

the system by themselves.

Wild fish can be encouraged to enter into

[*j) Paddy management *]

rice fields by keeping the entrances of the

fields open, and bunds low (Figure 12).

Naturally grown weeds in the field must be

They can be attracted by placing branches in

eradicated and other harmful insect must be

the field which provide shelter for the fish or

controlled by IPM (Integrated Pest Man-

by placing buffalo or cow skins to attract

agement). Water for rice-fish culture must

catfish and eels. Wild fish may be harvested

be free from toxicants such as insecticides.

from rice fields by netting, hooking, trap-

In many areas of the world, concurrent rice-

ping, harpooning, throwing nets, or by

fish culture has abandoned because toxic

draining out the field. As water levels fall,

chemicals are used. Agricultural extension

fish may be channeled into adjacent trap

specialists should be contacted for advice

pond areas where they can be held alive un-

before stocking fish in paddies supplied with

til required. Black fish from trap ponds are

water from a communal irrigation source.

often marketed live in local markets.

Irrigation water can easily be contaminated

by other farmers using chemicals in their

rice fields.

Rice husbandry practices that should be

followed include rat control, weeding, prop-

er spacing of seedlings, and proper fertiliza-

tion. Normal weeds control and fertilization

chemicals are not harmful to fish. Paddy

dikes should be high and strong enough to

hold water without leaking. Dikes made of

Figure 12: Management of fishes in rice

good quality clay are best.


[*k) Application of supplementary feed: *]

[*i) Management of rice-fish culture *]

Supplementary feed needs to be supplied for

If water sources are more secured and the

faster growth of stocked species (Figure 13).

risk of flooding is low, farmers may invest

Supplementary feed can be applied at 3-5%

in fish stock for their paddies or adjacent

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al weight of stocked biomass. If phytoplankton

much possible by draining out (dewatering)

feeder fish like silver carp stocked in the rice

the water of the field.

field, no extra feeds will be required for fish.

[*n) Harvesting *]

Approximately 4–5 months of culturing, the

farmers usually harvest the rice first, and

then drain the rice field to gather the fish

into the ditch (Figure 16). Fish are harvested

from these places and then processed for

marketing and consuming.

Figure 13: Application of feed in the ditch-

es of the rice and fish or rice-fish rice fields

during rice fish integration.

[*l) Dyke cropping *]

Vegetables can be planted on dyke or by

making rack made of available materials

such as bamboo sticks, vegetables branches

Figure 14: Dyke cropping in rice-fish fields.

without leaves, etc. (Figure 14).

[*o) Other considerations *]

[*m) Growth and health monitoring of fish *]

Water control is crucial and rice

fields cannot be allowed to dry up

Regular sampling of stocked fish species is

while fish stocks are present.

very much necessary to monitor the growth,

 Stocked fish may escape if fields are

or to test disease (Figure 15). This can be

flooded. Flood control can be diffi-

done by using seine net in ditch after gather-

cult in rain fed rice systems.

ing the fish there (in ditch). For maximum

 Areas of rice fields deepened for fish

benefit, stocked species must be harvested in

culture may result in less rice grow-

proper time. Harvesting (100%) is very

ing area.

 Having fish present in rich fields

may help dissuade farmers from us-

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al ing pesticides. Pesticides have the

would cause no transport problems and

potential for poisoning fish and some

would be mostly fresh and healthy.

types can be absorbed by the fish and

The production of a fish crop be-

then ingested by humans.

tween the two rice crops provides the farmer

with an off-season job (Hora and Pillay,

1962[*)*]. This can increase the income without

increasing expenses (Hickling, 1962[*)*]. Apart

from the additional income available from

rizi-pisciculture (rotational culture of fish

and rice), the combined culture leads to a

reduction of labour in weeding and an in-

crease in the yield of paddy by 5 to 15%.

Figure 15: Fish health and growth



The benefits of rice-fish integration in terms

of productivity and economics are diverged

and well-documented. Coche, (1967) dis-

cusses the socio-economic importance of

fish culture in rice fields and pointed out and

the deficit of animal protein in densely pop-

ulated rice growing areas. The fish grown in

the paddy fields will be ideal use of land and

would also be an easy source of cheap and

fresh animal proteins. Thus fish culture can

greatly contribute to the socio-economic

welfare, especially for rural populations of

Figure 16: Pictures showing harvesting of

developing countries. An added advantage

rice and fish.

also is that unlike sea fish or other animal

proteins, the fish from local paddy fields

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al The increasing rice production in the rice-regards of sustainability of rice fish farming,

fish integration is attributed to various fac-

there should be needed -

tors (Coche, 1967), namely,

 grant support

a) reduction in the number of harmful in-

 ensuring Inputs (seeds, feeds, fish

sects, such as paddy stem borers, whose

fry/fingerlings) supply

larvae are eaten by fish.

 capacity building training

b) reduction in rat population due to in-

 technology dissemination

crease in the water level.

 value chain development

c) increase in organic fertilization by fish

 creating marketing channel

excreta and remains of artificial feed.

 co-ordination, collaboration and

d) better tilling of the rice seedlings due to


the activity of the fish.

 creating net-mapping among differ-

e) increased mineralization of the organic

ent actors

matter and increased aeration of the soil

 creating policy, dialog, scale in and

resulting from the puddling of mud by


benthic feeders.

  • *

f) control of algae and weeds (by phytoph-


agous fish) which compete with rice for

light and nutrients.

There is a need to refine rice-fish farming,

g) fish stir up soil nutrients making them

where the thrust is on improving fish pro-

more available for rice. This increases

duction without affecting rice production.

rice production.

De La Cruz et al. (1992) had identified pos-

sible areas and tropics for research for vari-


ous countries (De La Cruz et al., 1992).


Tropics common to several countries where

rice-fish farming is practiced or has high

Wet (rain-fed) rice cultivation has been

potential are:

practiced for at least 4000 years ago, and its

 Ecological studies specially on food

history indicates that rice farming is basical-

webs and nutrient cycle in a rice field

ly sustainable. What is less certain is wheth-


er the dramatic increases of rice production

 Determination of the carrying capacity

made possible by the “green revolution” are

and optimum stocking densities;





 Development of rice field hatchery

warming, sea level rise, increased ultraviolet

and/or nursery system;

radiation and even unavailability of water

 Development of rice-fish farming mod-

are all expected to have an adverse impact

els species to different agroclimatic

on rice production. However, such scenarios


are far the foreseeable future can be as-

 Optimum fertilization rates and fertiliza-

sumed that rice farming will continue. Fur-

tion methods;

ther, it seems likely that the culture of fish in

 Evaluation of new fish species for rice

rice farming makes the rice field ecosystem

field culture;

more balanced and stable. With fish remov-

 Evaluation of different fish species in

ing the weeds and reducing the insects’ pest

control of rice pests and diseases;

population to tolerable levels, the poisoning

 Development of fish aggregating and

of the water and soil may be curtailed. In

fish harvesting techniques for rice fields;

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 27

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al and optimal rice planting patterns for

Bureau of Statistics (BBS), Ministry

rice-fish farming.

of Planning, Government of the Peo-

ple’s Republic of Bangladesh, Dhaka.

Other tropics identified are not neces-

sarily specific to rice-fish farming and may

Berg, H. (2001). Pesticide use in rice and

be covered by regular aquaculture research

rice-fish farms in the Mekong Delta,

such as fish nutrition and feed development,

Vietnam. Crop Protection 20, 897–

or in agronomy e.g. weed ecology and man-

905. * *

agement. Long-term “wish list” research in-

  • *

cludes the development of new rice varieties

BRKB. (2010). Rice statistics in Bangla-

for different rice-fish systems.

desh. Bangladesh Rice Knowledge

Bank (BRKB), Bangladesh Rice Re-


search Institute, Gazipur, Bangladesh.

To meet the increasing demand of food for

Chowdhury, M. R. (2009). Population





challenge facing Bangladesh. Long Is-

should be needed to more increased rice and

land University, CW Post Campus,

fish productions. This document accom-

New York, USA.

plishes that rice-fish integration could be a

practical opportunity for farm diversifica-

Coche, A. G. (1967). Fish culture in rice

tion. Such divergence will enhance food se-

fields: a worldwide synthesis. Hydro-

curity. Rice-fish integration makes the rice

biologia 30(1), 1–44. * *

field ecosystem with an efficiently and envi-

  • *

ronmentally comprehensive production sys-

[*De la Quz CR, Lightfoot, C., Costa-rerce *]

tem for rice and fish. Rice monoculture can-

*B. A., Carangal, V. R. and Bimbao, *

not alone provide a sustainable food supply,

M. P. (1992). Rice-fish research and

while integrated rice-fish farming will be the

development in Asia. ICLARM, Ma-

best in terms of resource utilization, produc-

nila, Philippines, 457p. * *

tivity and food supply. It should therefore be

  • *

recommended that integrated rice-fish farm-

DoF. (2010). Fishery Statistical Yearbook of

ing could be a sustainable alternative to rice

Bangladesh 2008–2009. Fisheries Re-

monoculture as more production and bene-

sources Survey System, Department of

fits can be achieved in rice-fish culture

Fisheries (DoF), Ministry of Fisheries

compared to the rice farming alone.

and Livestock, Dhaka, Bangladesh.


*Dugan, P., Dey, M. M. and Sugunan, V. *

  • *

V. (2006). Fisheries and water produc-

*Ahmed, N., Ahammed, F. and Brakel, M. *

tivity in tropical river basins: enhanc-

V. (2008). An economic analysis of

ing food security and livelihoods by



_Macrobrachium _

managing water for fish. _Agricultural _

rosenbergii farming in Mymensingh,

Water Management 80, 262–275. * *

Bangladesh. _The World Aquaculture _

  • *

Society 38, 37–50. * *

[*Frei, M. and Becker, K. (2005). *] Integrated

  • *

rice-fish culture: coupled production

BBS. (2011). Household Income and Ex-

saves resources. _Natural Resources _

penditure Survey 2010. Bangladesh

Forum 29, 135–143. * *

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Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al Giap, D. H., Yi, Y. and Lin, C. K. (2005).

H. (2008). Potential of mixed culture

Effects of different fertilization and

of freshwater prawn ( _Macrobrachium _

feeding regimes on the production of

rosenbergii) and self-recruiting small

integrated farming of rice and prawn

species mola ( Amblypharyngodon mo-

_Macrobrachium _



la) in rotational rice-fish/prawn culture

Man). Aquaculture Research 36, 292–

systems in Bangladesh. _Aquaculture _

299. * *

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  • *

  • *

Greenland, D. J. (1997). The Sustainablity

Lightfoot, C., van Dam, A. and Costa-

of rice farming. GAB International,

Pierce, B. A. (1992). What’s happen-

UK. 273p.

ing to rice yields in rice-fish systems?

In: dela Cruz, C. R., Lightfoot, C.,

*Gupta, M. V., Sollows, J. D., Mazid, M. *

Costa-Pierce, B. A., Carangal, V. R.

*A., Rahman, A., Hussain, M. G. and *

and Bimbao, M. P. (Eds.). Rice-Fish

Dey, M. M. (2002). Economics and

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adoption patterns of integrated rice-

ICLARM Conference Proceedings 24,

fish farming in Bangladesh. In: Ed-

Manila, Philippines, pp. * [*177–183].

wards, P., Little, D.C. and Demaine,

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Lu, J. and Li, X. (2006). Review of rice-

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fish farming systems in China – one of

the globally important ingenious agri-

Gurung, T. B. and Wagle, S. K. (2005).

cultural heritage systems (GIAHS).

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for environmental, economic and so-

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Halwart, M. and Gupta, M. V. (2004).

sis. Aquaculture Economics and Man-

Culture of fish in rice fields. Food and

agement 12, 145–153. * *

Agriculture Organization of the United

  • *

Nations and the WorldFish Center, * p *

*Nhan, D. K., Phong, L. T., Verdegem, M. *


*J. C., Duong, L. T., Bosma, R.H. *

and Little, D. C. (2007). Integrated

Hickling, C. F. (1962). Fish culture. Faber

freshwater aquaculture, crop and live-

and Faber Ltd., London, 295 p.

stock production in the Mekong delta,

  • *

Vietnam: determinants and the role of

Hora, S. L. and Pillay, T. V. R. (1962).

the pond. Agricultural Systems[* 94, *]

Handbook of fish culture in the Indo-


Pacific Region. _FAO Fish Technical _

  • *

Paper[* 14, 204*]. * *

Parvez, M. S., Salekuzzaman, M., Hoss-

  • *

ain, M. E. and Azam, K. (2012).


Economics and productivity of rice


cum freshwater prawn ( Macrobrachi-

um Rosenbergii) in the gher farming

*Kunda, M., Azim, M. E., Wahab, M. A., *


_International _


*Dewan, S., Roos, N. and Thilsted, S. *

1(3), 39–49. * *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 29

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Integrated Rice-Fish Farming Rahman et al *Parvez, M. S., Sarker, M. S., Azad, M. S. *

Farmers, Arunachal Pradesh, India,

and Salekuzzaman, M. (2006). Effect

Journal of Agriculture & Rural Devel-

on water quality, pond productivity

[_opment _]6 (1&2), 125–131.

and growth of carps in polyculture

  • *

system by using homestead organic

Waibel, H. (1992). Comparative economics

wastage as a pond manure. Interna-

of pesticide use in rice and rice-fish

tional Journal of Sustainable Agricul-

farming, p. 245-254. In: dela Cruz, C.

[_tural Technology _]2(2), 45–50.

R., Lightfoot, C., Costa-Pierce, B. A.,

Carangal, V. R. and Bimbao, M. P.

Saikia, S. and Das, D. N. * [*(2008)]. Rice-Fish

(Eds.). Rice-fish research and devel-

Culture and its Potential in Rural De-

opment in Asia. _ICLARM Conference _

velopment: A Lesson from Apatani

Proceedings 24, 457p. * *

  • *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 30

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P31-37 _]

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

*Molecular Marker Techniques in Environmental Forensic *

*Studies *

*Narayanan Kannan *

Institute for Graduate Studies, Taylor’s University (Lakeside Campus), 47500, Subang Jaya, Se-

_langor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia _

[_ Phone No.: +60 14 338 5307; E mail: [email protected] _]


Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are anthropogenic contaminants found globally in water, ice,

soil, air and sediment. Modern analytical techniques allow us to determine these chemicals in

environmental matrices at parts per trillion levels or lower. Environmental forensic on PCBs

opens up new avenues of investigation such as transport and fate of water masses in oceans, sed-

imentation, onset of primary production, migration of marine mammals, their population distri-

bution and pharmacokinetics of drugs inside organisms. By virtue of persistence, bioaccumula-

tion, bioconcentration and structure-activity relationship PCBs emerge as unconventional chemi-

cal tracers of new sort.

Keywords[*:*] Anthropogenic contaminants; environmental forensic; metabolic slope; risk assess-

ment; PCBs; sea water; sediment; suspended particulate matter; TEQs; tracers

  • *

  • *


Kannan et al., 1993; Li et al., 2007; Wang _et _

al., 2007).

Since the beginning of industrial revolution

the number of synthesized chemicals keeps


increasing. Currently it is beyond three mil-


lion and is growing at a rate of several hun-

dred thousand a year of which 300-500

Hence, environmental analytical chemists

reach the stage of commercial production. It

focused mostly on a selected number of per-

is estimated that up-to one third of the total

sistent organic chemicals such as agrochem-

production of these chemicals reaches the

icals (Aldrin, Dieldrin, Endrin, Heptachlor,

environment. When out of place in the envi-




ronment these chemicals are called pollu-



tants. Measurement of these chemicals after

(HBCD), Hexabromodiphenyl ether and

integrating with environmental matrix such

heptabromodiphenyl ether, Hexachloroben-

as sediment, biota, suspended particulate

zene (HCB), Hexachlorobutadiene, Alpha

matter (SPM) and even in water becomes

hexachlorocyclohexane, Beta hexachlorocy-

extremely complex demanding sophisticated

clohexane, Lindane, Mirex, Pentachloroben-

analytical techniques (Duinker et al., 1988;

zene, Pentachlorophenol and its salts and

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 31

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan esters; Technical endosulfan and its related

isomers, Toxaphene), industrial chemicals

(Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Poly-

chlorinated naphthalenes (PCN), Polybro-

minated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), Perfluo-

rooctanesulfonic acid (PFOs) and/or un-

wanted by-products of industrial processes

or combustion (Polychlorinated dibeno- p-

dioxins (PCDDs), Polychlorinated dibenzo-

furans (PCDFs) that are bioaccumulative

Figure 1: Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

and have the potential to disturb biological

processes (EPA, 2002).

Thus, PCBs emerged as model sub-

stances, representing a whole range of POPs.



PCBs are extremely bioaccumulative and


used in the study of migration of oceanic

wildlife such as whales (Subramanian et al.,

Among these persistent organic pollutants

1988; Wania, 1998), their population distri-

(POPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)

bution (Mossner and Ballschmiter, 1997;

(Figure 1) are well characterized with refer-

Bruhn et al., 1999) and their nursing activi-

ence to their physico-chemical properties,

ties (Addison and Brodie, 1987; Beckmen _et _

biological potencies and environmental oc-

al., 1999) (Figure 2).

currence/transport and fate (Kannan, 2000;

Fiedler (UNEP site)).

[*Figure 2: *]Biplot of princi-

pal components 1 and 2

derived from correlation

matrix of mol% contribu-

tions of CBs in the blubber

tissue of male and female

immature as well as male

mature harbour porpoises

from the Baltic Sea (B).,

North Sea (N)., and Arctic

waters (A). The CB num-

bers represent the loadings

and B, N, A represent the

scores (from Bruhn et al.,

1999). * *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 32

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan PCBs are widely used in understandin understanding the phase I and phase II

ing the trophic and reproductive transfer of

metabolism in organisms including humans,

persistence chemicals (Aguilar and Borrell,

the enzyme induction and in-vitro and in-

1994; Kannan et al., 1995; Jackson and

vivo toxicities (Safe et al., 1985; Kannan _et _

Schindler, 1996; Kim et al., 2002). Fugacity

al., 1989ab; Boon et al., 1992; Ishii and

models are widely used in understanding the

Oguri, 2002) (Figure 3).

hemispheric transfer of PCBs and the dy-

PCBs production history in the US is

namics behind long range transport (Wania

also the history of industrial openness to-

and Mackay, 1996). The structure biological

wards safety issues and US chemical regula-

activity relationship based on the inherent

tion (Anonymous, 2007). Improvement in

planar and globular nature of PCBs is useful

the analytical chemistry of PCBs supported

the development of finger printing tech-

niques, chemometrics and over all aware-

ness on environmental forensic (Kannan _et _

al., 1992, 2007; Peré-Trepata et al., 2006).

The space and time integrated sam-

pling of surface sea water over oceanic tran-

sects reveal pollution source, the physical

and biological status of the region (biologi-

cal blooms etc.) and prevailing currents that

bring the contaminants to that region

(Schulz-Bull et al., 1995; Kannan et al.,

1998; Yamashita et al., 2008; Kannan et al.,

2011). Deep water sampling devices when

applied for PCB studies help to understand

ocean structure and circulation (Schulz et al.,

1988; Petrick et al., 1996; Schulz-Bull et al.,

1998; Kannan et al., 1998).

A study on the vertical profile of

East Sea (Japan Sea) revealed the intrinsic

stratification of those deep waters, otherwise

revealed only by conventional tracers (radio

isotopes) (Figure 4). This unexpected find-

ing PCBs at a depth of 3000 m demonstrated

that our oceans are much more dynamic than

it was thought before and the entire ocean

Figure 3: A) Vicinal atoms in the meta and

circulation has speeded up in recent years

para positions. Overlapping covalent radii

due to global warming (Kannan et al., 1998).

for two ortho-Cl show that a planar configu-

Passive air samplers when deployed north-

ration is highly improbable when three or

south in open oceans or oceanic islands

four ortho-Cl are present. B) Vicinal H at-

and/or systematic water sampling in the

oms in the ortho and meta positions. Non-

open ocean in north-south directions will

overlapping covalent radii for ortho-Cl and

greatly enhance such predictions.

ortho-H show that a planar configuration

causes a much lower energy barrier when

chlorine atoms do not oppose each other

(from Boon et al., 1992).

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 33

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan Figure 4: Presence of PCBs at 3500 m in Japan Sea indicates faster movements (using convec-tion and horizontal currents) of these chemicals in ocean circulation (Kannan et al., 1998).

  • *

Anonymous (2007). The History of PCBs:


When Were Health Problems Detected?



Addison, R. F. and Brodie, P. F. (1987).


Transfer of organochlorine residues

pcbs/ (last accessed on August 31,

from blubber through the circulatory

2016). * *

system in milk in the lactating grey

seal, Halichoerus grypus. _Canadian J. _

*Beckmen, K.B., Ylitalo, G.M., Towell, *

_Fish. Aqua. Sci. _ 44, 782–786. * *

*R.G., Krahn, M.M., O’Hara, T.M. *

and Blake, J.E. (1999). Factors af-

[*Aguilar, A. and Borrell, A. (1994). *] Repro-

fecting organochlorine contaminant

ductive transfer and variation of body

concentrations in milk and blood of

load of organochlorine pollutants with

northern fur seal ( Callorhinus ursinus)

age in fin whales ( Balaenoptera phy-

dams and pups from St George Island,

salus). _Arch. Environ. Toxicol. _ *27, *

Alaska. _Sci Total Environ. _ 23:183-200. * *

546-554. * *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 34

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan *Boon, J.P., van Arnhem, E., Jansen, S., *




*Kannan, N., Petrick, G., Schulz, D., *

Pentachlorobiphenyl. J. Health. Sci. *48, *

*Duinker, J., Reijnders, P.J.H. and *

97-105. * *

Goksoyr, A. (1992). The toxicokinet-

ics of PCBs in marine mammals with

Jackson, L. and Schindler, D.E. (1996).

special reference to possible interac-

Field estimates of net trophic transfer

tions of individual congeners with the

of PCBs from prey fishes to Lake




Michigan salmonoids. _Environ. Sci. _

monooxygenase system – an overview.

Technol. 30, 1861-1865. * *

In: _Persistent pollutants in marine _

Kannan, N., Wakimoto, T. and Tatsuka-




wa, R. (1989a). Possible involvement




of frontier (π) electrons in the metabo-

Press, New York 1992. pp. 119-159. * *

lism of polychlorinated biphenyls

*Bruhn, R., Kannan, N., Petrick, G., *

(PCBs). Chemosphere 18, 9-10. * *

[*Schulz-Bull, D.E. and Duinker, J.C. *]

*Kannan, N., Tanabe, S., Ono, M. and *

(1999). Persistent organic contami-

[*Tatsukawa, R. (1989b). *] Critical eval-

nants in harbour porpoises from the

uation of PCB toxicity in Terrestrial

North Sea, the Baltic Sea and Arctic

and marine mammals: Increasing im-

waters. _Sci. Total Environ. _ [*237/238, *]

pact of non- ortho and mono- ortho co-

351-361. * *

planar PCBs from land to ocean. _Arch. _

*Duinker, J. C., D. E. Schulz. and Petrick, *

Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 18, 850-

[*G. (1988). *] Multidimensional gas


chromatography with electron capture

*Kannan, N., Schulz, D.E., Petrick, G. and *

detection for the determination of tox-

[*Duinker, J.C. (1992). *] High resolution

ic congeners in PCB mixtures. _Anal. _

PCB analysis of Kanechlor, Phenoclor

_Chem. _ 60, 478-82. * *

and Sovol mixtures using multi-

Environmental Protection Agency (2002).

dimensional gas chromatography. In-

Persistent Organic Pollutants: A Glob-

tern. J. Environ. Anal. Chem. 47, 201-






215. * *


[*Kannan,N., Petrick,G., Schultz-Bull,D.E. *]


and Duinker, J.C. (1993). Chromato-


graphic techniques in accurate analysis

response (last accessed August 30, of chlorobiphenyls. J.Chromatgr. *642, *

2016). * *

425-434. * *

Ishii, Y. and Oguri, K. (2002). Liver Pro-

[*Kannan, N., Reusch, T.B.H., Schulz-Bull, *]

teins that are Sensitive to a Dioxin-

*D.E., Petrick, G. and Duinker, J.C *

Like Toxic Compound, Coplanar Pol-

(1995). * * Chlorobiphenyls: Model

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 35

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan compounds for metabolism in food

trometry determination of sterols from

chain organisms and their potential use

marine sediment samples. _J. Chromat. _

as ecotoxicological stress indicators by

A. 1160, 64-70. * *

application of the metabolic slope

concept. _Environ. Sci. Technol. _ *29, *

Kim, S. K., Lee, D. S. and Oh, J. R. (2002).

1851-1859. * *

Characteristics of trophic transfer of

polychlorinated biphenyls in marine

*Kannan, N.., Yamashita, N.., Petrick, G. *

organisms in Incheon North Harbor,

and Duinker, J.C. (1998). Polychlo-

Korea. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. *21, *





834-841. * *

Nonylphenols in the Sea of Japan. En-

viron. Sci. Technol. 32, 1747-1753. * *

Mossner, S. and Ballschmiter, K. (1997).

Marine mammals as global pollution

Kannan, N. (2000) . Non- ortho and mono-

indicators for organochlorines. Chem-

ortho substituted PCBs. In: The Hand-

osphere 34, 1285-1296. * *

book of Environmental Chemistry. Vol.


_Anthropogenic _


[*Peré-Trepata, E., Olivella, L., Ginebreda, *]

Paasivirta, J. (eds.). Springer-Verlag,

A., Caixach, J. and Tauler, R. (2006).

Berlin. pp. 127-156. * *

Chemometrics modelling of organic

contaminants in fish and sediment riv-

*Kannan, N., Hong, S.H., Shim, W.J. and *

er samples. Sci. Total Environ. *371, *

Oh. J.R. (2007). A congener-specific

223-237. * *

survey for Polychlorinated dibenzo- p-

dioxins (PCDDs) and Polychlorinated

[*Petrick, G., Schulz-Bull, D. E. and *]

dibenzofurans (PCDFs) contamination

Duinker, J. C. (1996). An in-situ fil-

in Masan Bay, Korea. Chemosphere

tration/extraction system for the re-

68, 1613–1622. * *

covery of trace organics in solution

and on particles tested in deep ocean

*Kim, M, Jin Y, Han, G. M, Jung, J. H, *

water. Mar. Chem. 54, 97-105. * *

*Hong, S. H, Yim, U. H, Shim WJ, *

Choi, D. L and Kannan, N. (2016).

Safe, S., Bandiera, S., Sawyer, T., Robert-

Origins of suspended particulate mat-

*son, L., Safe, L., Parkinson, A., *

ter revealed by the sterol distribution

*Thomas, P.E., Ryan, D.E., Reik, *

in the low salinity water mass ob-

*L.M., Levin, W., Denomme, M.A. *

served in the offshore East China Sea.

and Fujita, T. (1985). PCBs: Struc-

Marine Pollution Bulletin. [*108 (1–2), *]

ture-function relationships and mecha-

281–288. * *

nism of action. Environ. Hlth. Per-

spect. 60: 47-56. * *

Li, D.H., Dong, M., Shim, W.J. and Kan-

nan, N. (2007). Application of pres-

*Schulz, D. E., Petrick, G. and Duinker, *

surized fluid extraction technique in

J.C. (1988). Chlorinated biphenyls in

the gas chromatography–mass spec-

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Molecular Marker Techniques in Environ…… Kannan north Atlantic surface and deep water.

mental Chemists Corp. Toronto, Can-

Mar. Pollut. Bull. 19, 526-531. * *


*pp. *



[*Schulz-Bull, D.E., Petrick, G., Bruhn, R. *]


and J.C. Duinker. (1998). Chlorobi-

1&type=pdf (last accessed on August phenyls (PCB) and PAH in water

31, 2016). * *

masses of the northern North Atlantic.

Mar. Chem. 61, 101–114. * *

*Wang, J., Dong, M., Shim, W.J., Kannan, *

N. and Li, D.H. (2007). Improved

[*Schulz-Bull, D.E., Petrick, G., Kannan, N. *]

cleanup technique for gas chromato-

and Duinker, J.C. (1995). Distribu-

graphic–mass spectrometric determi-

tion of individual chlorobiphenyls

nation of alkylphenols from biota ex-

(PCB) in solution and suspension in

tract. J. Chromat. A. 1171, 15-21. * *

the Baltic Sea. Mar. Chem. 48, 245-

270. * *

[*Wania, F. and Mackay, D. (1996). *] Track-

ing the Distribution of Persistent Or-

Subramanian, A., Tanabe, S. and Tatsu-

ganic Pollutants. _Environ. Sci. Technol. _

kawa, R. (1988). Estimating some bi-

30, 390A-396A. * *

ological parameters of Baird’s beakesd

whales using PCBs and DDE as trac-

*Yamashita, N., Taniyasu, S., Petrick, G., *

ers. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 19, 284-287. * *

*Wei, S., Gamo, T., Lam, P.K.S. and *

Kannan, K. (2008). Perfluorinated ac-

Wania, F. (1998). [* *]The Significance of Long

ids as novel chemical tracers of global

Range Transport of Persistent Organic

circulation of ocean waters. Chemo-

Pollutants by Migratory Animals.

[_sphere _]70, 1247-1255. * *

WECC Report 3/98, Wania Environ-

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 37

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P38-50 _]

[*Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming: A Case *]

*in Paddy Farming in Peninsular Malaysia *

  • *

[* Zakirah Othman and Quamrul Hasan* *]

_ _

_School of Technology Management and Logistic, College of Business, Universiti Utara _

_Malaysia, 06010 Sintok, Kedah Darul Aman. Malaysia _

[_ *Corresponding author; Tel. No.: +604-928-7062; Email: [email protected] _]


Many researches have proven that the sustainable agriculture has many advantages such as

providing cost effectiveness (e.g., using less amount of water); balancing the ecosystem; and,

most importantly, its practice is environment-friendly. It helps to increase the crop’s resistance

towards diseases, protect the soil from losing its natural fertility and helps in maintaining the

diversity of the microflora in soil. System of Rice Intensification (SRI) is an innovative

methodology being used for sustainability in social development. It is widely recognized as a

suitable model for creating environmental, economic and social sustainability in agriculture for

the 21st century. In addition, by paying attention to environment, SRI is an organic farming

management system, which results in higher quality yield with better taste and health benefits.

Therefore, this study was undertaken to understand about the SRI as the sustainable paddy

farming practice in the two selected areas on Peninsular Malaysia. This study has used a

qualitative research approach. Data was collected through field work observations and

interviews. The findings of this study showed that there were similarities mostly in the practice

of paddy farming (only with a minor difference on the days) in Sik (Kedah) and Bandar Baru

Tunjong (Kelantan). Furthermore, it showed that the proposed model of sustainable paddy

farming practices, which was a result of this study, could be explained well under three key

areas: 1) sustainable characteristic; 2) sustainable paddy farming practices; and 3) challenges in

sustainable farming. More research is required on the sustainable agriculture and organic farming

for better understanding and to addressing the agricultural sustainability related issues.

Keywords[*:*] Environment; organic farming; paddy; sustainable agriculture; system of rice

intensification (SRI) * *





without causing significant damage to nature

Sustainability in agriculture refers to the

and environment (Ismail, 2006). Sustainable

farmer’s ability to maintain crop production

agriculture has some advantages such as: 1)

and obtain benefits as well by accelerating

providing cost effectiveness; 2) balancing

social growth, stabilizing economy and

ecosystem; and 3) being environmental

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 38

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan


thought which can be tapped by altering the

The focus of this study is on the

management practices. So far, the SRI





planting tests have been carried out in a total

agriculture and organic farming by paying

of 48 countries including in Asia, Africa and

attention on the environment. The

Latin America. Many SRI users reported

management of sustainable agricultural

benefits such as a reduction in pests,

practice in Malaysia paddy farming is still in

diseases, grain shattering, unfilled grains






and lodging. Additional environmental

Muhammad, 2011; Othman et. al, 2016).

benefits stem from the reduction of

Currently, a popular system in organic

agricultural chemicals, water use and

farming in Asia is the System of Rice

methane emissions that contribute to global

Intensification (SRI) (Uphoff, 2006), which

warming. SRI is also suitable for highland

has been practiced in Malaysia since 2009

paddy farming, and its application has

by starting at Bandar Baru Tunjong,

already been expanded to other types of

Kelantan, and Sik, Kedah. In the context of

crops such as sugar cane.

SRI management, the Sri Lovely Farm at

According to Uphoff (2006), paddy

Sik (which is one of the two cases in this

farming application using the SRI is based

study) was one of the few certified organic

on six main principles as follows: (1) When

farms in Malaysia in 2013. The knowledge

(if) transplanting, to start with young

in implementing the SRI in paddy

seedlings (two-leaf stage); (2) Plants to be

cultivation is still limited and, therefore,

set out carefully and gently in a square

more studies are necessary to establish it.

pattern of the size 25×25cm or wider if the

This study is undertaken to understand the

soil condition is very good, but this size can

SRI as a sustainable paddy farming practice

be even wider if the soil is fertile enough, or

by selecting two farms from different states

once it becomes more fertile after the SRI

of West Malaysia. It explores the two







experienced farmers’ practices in managing

transplanted singly; (4) Rice paddies are to

their paddy farms by employing the SRI. As

be irrigated intermittently by keeping

the main objective of the research was to to

minimum of water rather than continuously

understand and identify the sustainable

flooded; (5) Weeding is to be carried out for

agricultural practices in organic paddy

at least twice though the best result can be

farming in Malaysia.

obtained from multiple weeding with a

  • *

‘rotating hoe’ that actively aerates the soil at


the same time churning weeds back into the

soil to decompose, thereby conserving their

SRI is a method to manage organic farming.

nutrients; and (6) Basic organic fertilizers,

It was developed in Madagascar in 1983 as a

compost or any decomposed biomass are to

revolutionary paddy cultivation method to

be used.

achieve very high yields with reduced

  • *

resources such as irrigation water, fertilizers


and chemicals. The SRI is implemented in a


number of rice-growing countries, including

in China, India, and Myanmar. It is found

Global warming, environmental crisis, plant

that the existing rice varieties have more

diseases and pests are the main causes in

genetic potential than that of the previously

disrupting the food production in many

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 39

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

countries around the world. At this time,






when the world’s population is increasing

integrated sustainable paddy fields were in

rapidly resulting in to higher demand of

Bandar Baru Tunjong, Sabak Bernam,

food, these problems have threatened food

Ledang and Bario (Sarawak).

security and people’s health worldwide.

According to the National Green

Every day 24,000 people are dying due to

Technology Policy Malaysia, effective

hunger-related causes including one child

promotion and public awareness are two of

every five seconds.

the main factors that would affect the

Rice is the staple food for more than

success of sustainable development through

three billion people from all around the

the green technology agenda (National

world. At least, 114 countries grow rice and

Green Technology Policy 2009, Malaysia,

more than 50 countries have at least an

Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and

annual production of 100,000 tonnes. As

Water). This is particularly significant as

rice is the main food for most countries in

such adoption requires a change of mindset

Asia, about 90% of the global rice

of the public through various approaches,

production and consumption are in Asia. At





this time, when the world’s population is

information dissemination to increase public

already reeling from higher food prices,

awareness of sustainable agriculture and on

many countries have banned or restricted

ways to conserve the environment. Mustafa

their rice exports, which pushes up the price

and Mohd Jani (1995) stated that greater

of rice even higher. Since 1990s, the

public awareness about environmental

increase in rice production has become

pollution and depletion of resources can help

slower as compared with population growth.

Malaysia to develop sustainable agriculture.

Indeed, it is anticipated that rice production

More intensive monitoring and investigating

should be increased by 30% by 2025 in

agricultural practices would enable Malaysia

order to cater for the world’s growing

to achieve sustainability in agriculture

population. Among many other countries,

(Murad _et. al. _, 2008).

Malaysia has not yet achieved self-

There have been many strategies to

sufficiency in food production.

increase production in the sustainable

  • *

contexts; such as creation of paddy estate,


Malaysia Organic Scheme ( _Skim Organic _


[_Malaysia – _] SOM) and Malaysia Good

Plantation Resources Practices System

Organic rice farming in West Malaysia

( [_Sistem Amalan Ladang Baik Malaysia _]-

began in the early 1990’s under the guidance









practices and promoting organic farming in

(NGO), working with small holder farmers

Malaysia. However, there are very limited

on rice storage in the state of Selangor. They

information is available on organic paddy

found that the system was not sustainable

farming using the SRI specifically in

due to a number of factors, such as poor


production technology support, marketing

The Department of Agriculture





(DOA) is the agency under the Malaysian

commitment. In 1999, Kahang Organic Rice

Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based

Eco Farm (KOREF) pioneered the organic

Industry involved in activities related to

method of rice farming practice in West

quality and productivity of crops. This

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

department introduced the SOM to promote

land. This project was kicked off on






December 24, 2009 using 32 hectares of

certification programme to recognize farms

land of Kampung Lintang, Kampung

which cultivate crops organically according

Kubang, Kampung Surau, Kampung Pinang,

to the criteria and requirement described in

Kampung Bukit Batu, Kampung Belantik

the scheme. The standard is based on the

Dalam and Kampung Belantik Luar. The

Malaysian Standard, MS 1529: 2001. In the






context of paddy farming, KOREF and Sri

managing director (Farmer 1) and his two

Lovely Farm are the two certified organic

assistants (Farmer 2 and Farmer 3).

farms in Malaysia.

The main questions asked during the

interviews were related to the steps involved

in paddy farming practices including land






management, fertilizer use, weed, pest and

This study employed a qualitative research

disease control, and harvesting. Data related






to paddy farming, mainly in sustainable

approaches. The observations and interviews

practices were compared and analyzed the

were carried out at Sik, Kedah and Bandar

adaption criteria of SOM. It is a standard

Baru Tunjong, Kelantan during 23 July 2009

that sets out the requirements for the

until 14 September 2013. Some of the

production, the labeling and claims for

interviews, by the







allowed, were recorded by videotaping.

requirements cover all stages of production,

However, all the interview answers were

including farm operations, preparation,

written down by the researcher in notebook.

storage, transport, and labeling. Further

Also, the phone calls were used to obtain

details are explained below:

further information from the respondents.

  • *

The selected respondents were the farmers

i[*. Land and soil management *]

of different levels including supervisor and

■ Farms shall take reasonable and

managing director. One of the respondents’

appropriate measures to minimize loss of

philosophies was stated as “the farming

topsoil through minimal tillage, contour

ought to safeguard the eco-system bestowed

plowing, crop selection, maintenance of

by God.”

cover crops and other management practices

The first location of this field study

that conserve soil.

was Bandar Baru Tunjong in Kelantan

■ Land clearing and preparation through

owned by the Sunnah Tani Sdn. Bhd. It was

burning vegetation, e.g. slash and burn, shall

started as a pilot project in May 2009 with 8

only be allowed and restricted to the

hectares of land at Kampung Tunjong in

minimum when other measures are not

Bandar Baru Tunjong by adopting the SRI


method as its paddy farming practice.

■ Burning of crop residues, e.g. straw

The second location of this field

burning is prohibited except in case of need

study was at the Sik area in Kedah owned by

to control a serious insect or disease

the Koperasi Agro Belantik Berhad (a local


cooperative organization). The project was

■ The fertility and biological activity of the

aimed to enhance the income of the local

soil should be maintained or increased,

people through the development of vacant

using appropriate methods by a) cultivation

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

of legumes, green manures or deep-rooting


plants in an appropriate multi-annual

  • *

rotation programme, b) incorporation in the

iv[*. Fertility management *]

soil of organic material, composted or not,

■ Crop production systems shall return

from holdings produced in accordance with

nutrients, organic matter and other resources

this standard.

removed from the soil through harvesting by


recycling, regeneration and addition of

ii[*. Water management *]

organic matter and nutrients with respect to

■ Operators shall take reasonable and

the nutrient requirement of crops and the

appropriate measures to prevent excessive

nutrient balance of the soil.

and improper use of water.

■ Operators shall plan their fertility

■ Operators shall take reasonable and

management to maximize the use of plant






and animal organic matter produced within

pollution of ground and surface water.

the farm and minimized the use of brought-

■ Organic handlers shall install systems that

in organic materials or mineral fertilizers.

permit the responsible use and recycling of

■ Where applicable, in annual crop

water without pollution or contamination,

production, an appropriate green manure

either by chemicals, or by animal or human

crop shall be included in the crop rotation


plan to maintain organic matter content and

■ Untreated sewage water is prohibited for

soil fertility.


■ Organic materials and mineral fertilizers

shall not be used if their production and use

iii[*. Seeds and planting material *]

have an unacceptable impact on the

■ Use of genetically modified organisms


(GMOs) and products thereof is prohibited

■ Allowance on the maximum amount of

in all aspects of organic production and

brought-in organic materials and mineral

handling without exception.

fertilizers used in the farm shall be

■ Seeds and vegetative reproductive

established on a case by case basis taking

material should be from plants grown in

into account local conditions and the nature

accordance with the provisions of this

of the crop.

standard for at least one generation or in the

■ Imported microbial inoculums used for

case of perennial crops, two growing

enhancing soil fertility shall undergo


quarantine procedures before use.

■ Use of conventional seed and planting

material is only allowed where there is no

v[*. Soil conditioners and fertilization *]

organic seed or propagation material of the

*material *

appropriate sort available.

■ The permitted organic materials and

■ Seeds and propagation material shall not

mineral fertilizers are listed in SOM.

be treated with prohibited substances.

■ Use of organic material (plant and animal)

Exceptions should be allowed where there is

from conventional systems should be

no untreated seed or propagation material of

allowed where there is no organic material

the appropriate sort available.

from organic systems available.

■ Where varieties protected under the Plant

■ Organic industrial by-products should be

Variety Protection Act are used, the farm

allowed if they are not contaminated with

shall respect intellectual property rights





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Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

contaminants exceeding applicable health

■ Farms shall use the approved substances

and sanitary regulations.

with care and abide with their conditions of

■ Animal manures shall not be used directly

use, so as to avoid altering the ecosystem of

on food crops, unless they have been

the soil and farm.

composted or measures are taken to prevent

risk of contamination exceeding applicable

vii[*. Harvest *]

health and sanitary regulations.

■ The crop must be harvested at proper

■ Use of human and pig excrement is



■ Waste from handling shall be managed so

■ Poultry manure from battery production

as to have minimum effect on the

systems should be allowed if manure from

environment. Where appropriate, organic

non-battery based production systems (e.g.

waste shall be used for nutrient recycling in

free range) is not available.

production fields

■ Use of trace elements should only be

  • *

allowed as supplements and only where


exhaustive measures to maximize the use of

plant and animal organic matter produced

Traditional and computer-based qualitative

within the farm as well as brought-in

methodologies were used to analyze the data

organic materials have been taken.

for emerging themes and to compare and

contrast the observation obtains from the

participants. The data from video-tapes

vi[*. Prevention and control of pests, *]

(interview) and written notes were also

*diseases and weeds *

transcribed. All the data were first reviewed

■ Pests, diseases and weeds shall be

and coded. The only data related to

controlled by cultural, mechanical, physical

understanding and identifying organic paddy

and biological methods.

farming practices were used in the analysis

■ Use of inputs for pest, disease, weed

of this study. Then, the data were

control and plastic mulch material shall be

categorized. The primary analysis helped the

allowed only where cultural, biological and

researcher to focus on the data that could be

mechanical measures are ineffective under

used to understand SRI management

the production condition in question. Spent

practices. The data analysis revealed that the

plastic mulch material shall be disposed

process of understanding and identifying

properly and not ploughed back into the soil.

organic paddy farming practices presented

■ Use of plant waste material from






conventional systems shall be allowed for





mulching where there is no plant material

farming practices; and (3) challenges in

from organic systems of the appropriate sort

sustainable farming. Lastly, the text and

available. e.g.: paddy straw, grasses, oil

visualization data were validated by an

palm leaves etc. Where the substances are

expert reviewer.

restricted, the conditions of use as set by the

certification body shall be strictly adhered


by the farm.

■ All substances used for pest control shall

Data related to paddy farming from the two






locations were compared and analyzed


based on the principles stated in the SOM.

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Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

Both similarities and differences (though the

two locations of this study (Othman, 2012).

differences were minor and limited to the

These are listed below.

days of treatment only) were found in the

practice of paddy farming in the two

[*a) Land preparation *]

selected locations. The findings are divided

Sik and Bandar Baru Tunjong farms recycle

in to three main areas (Sustainability

the rice straws by incorporating them into

characteristics, Sustainable paddy farming

the soil during the preparation of the land.

practices and Challenges in Sustainable

They apply one or two rounds of dry

Farming) and illustrated in Figure 1 as a

ploughing and two times wet ploughing by

proposed model.

tractors. However, they had preferred less or

no tilling of land. * *

*Sustainability characteristics *

Initially, the soil was ploughed by

tractor. Subsequently, water was let to enter

The characteristics of sustainability in

in to help in the decay of grass, rice straw

practical paddy farming as observed in Sik

and stubble. After two days, drains were

and Bandar Baru Tunjong were: (1)

constructed on the edge of a paddy plot, so

balancing the ecosystem; (2) input from

that the paddy field rice was always flooded

sustainable resources; (3) no chemical or

and the soils moisten. Then, the soil was

synthetic fertiliser and pesticide used; and

flattened with a flattening tool called a

(4) natural control of pests, diseases and

‘ruler’ or _pembaris. _ After that a ‘distance

weeds (Othman, 2012).

tool’ or penjarak was used, which

The first is balancing the farm

functioned as a means of determining the

ecosystem. The farmers from both farms-Sik

distances between the seedings to be

and Bandar Baru Tunjong agreed that the


farm should observe a natural control to

create balance in the ecosystem. This is

[*b) Seeds *]

evident in the statements from Farmer 4 and

Planting begins with soil treatment. In this

5 as recorded in the interview session:

trial project, five to seven tonnes of organic

_ _

_ _

fertiliser were placed into the soil a week

[_“The ecosystem is complete, let’s look at _]

before planting was carried out. It began

_this farm, we see it complete. There are _

with the selection of high quality seeds. The

[_living things. There is an eel (fish) … There _]

seed selection procedure at Bandar Baru

[_must be life. Then there is growth…and _]

Tunjong was similar to Sik. Then, the seeds

_ _

the paddy will grow well”, –(Farmer

were planted at the nursery. After that, they

5, personal communication, July 23, 2009). _ _

were transplanted to the paddy field

_ _

manually. The method required time and a

This feature is also evident in the

bountiful workforce in comparison to the

availability of living creatures such as fish,

direct scattering technique or through the

eel sand shrimp in the paddy fields.

use of machine transplanting. The farmers

planted paddy twice a year, once in the main

*Sustainable paddy farming practices *

season and once in the off season. All the

farmers in the two selected study areas used

Overall, there are eight major steps in

high quality seeds obtained from the

sustainable paddy farming practices at the

MARDI. The farmers from Bandar Baru

Tunjong used the SRI method in which the

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

seedlings were widely spaced (25cmx25cm),

with paddy straw, tree leaves and limes

while farmers at Sik used more widely space

which were left to soak for a duration of 14

(35cmx35cm) to plant a paddy.


  • *

[*c) Water management *]

[*e) Weed control *]

The efficiency of irrigation is necessary for

Basically, the Bandar Baru Tunjong and Sik

high yields. However, the organic method

farmers control the weeds manually and by

(SRI) uses less water compared to the

rotary weeding. The control of weedy rice

conventional farming method. The farm in

needs to be carried out directly right after

Sik obtained its supply of water from

the harvesting season.The porcupine is an

surrounding rivers.Water at Bandar Baru

equipment to plough the soil and discard

Tunjong was obtained from the nearby river

grass at Bandar Baru Tunjong. It also

through drain. Water was drained into a

functions as a tool to loosen the soil. This

nearby pool of water and allowed to stagnate

method of discarding the grass is employed

and drained to the paddy field when it was

from the time when the paddy seedlings


were 10- 40 days old.

[*d) Fertilizers *]

[_f) Pest and disease control _]

The farmers of Bandar Baru Tunjong and

Bandar Baru Tunjong and Sik farmers

Sik applied only compost, organic fertilizers






and natural minerals.Organic fertiliser was

conservation of natural predators, and IPM

self-made by the farmers themselves. Local

practices to control pests and diseases. The

Micro-organism (MOL) was used as the

IPM practices included biological pest

main component for the fertilizer. This





MOL can be used as an activator in the

effective application of pesticides and

preparation of compost. Other than being

mechanical traps. Some of the biological

used as compost, it was mixed with water

practices implemented by the Department

and sprayed directly to the soil. This was

include integrated fish rearing, integrated

done for the purpose of fertilizing the soil

Muscovy duck rearing, and rat controlled by

and increasing the nutrients. Self-made

Tyto Alba bird, a type of owl.

fertilizer can reduce the cost of production,

apart from preserving the sources.

[*g) Harvest *]

According to one farmer, the main

Paddy was ready for harvesting in 105-125

(mother) fertiliser is made from tender

days, and all the farmers in the two selected

bamboo shoots or the soft base of the banana

areas of this study used the harvester

tree stump. All these were crushed and

machine for harvesting.

mixed with sugar which contributed to a

In summary, both the similarities and

type of fertiliser. Following this, the

differences were found in the practice of

materials were soaked with water for up to

paddy farming in the two study locations,

day 14 days. Later, one litre of this fertiliser

which were also reported earlier (Othman et.

was added to 10 litres of water (25 litres can

al., 2010). A comparative summary on the

be used for one acre of the land area). The

organic paddy farming, using the SRI, in

similar method was used to produce other

two different farms are shown in Table 1

types of fertilisers by mixing animal dung

and Table 2.

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Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

Table 1: Summary of Paddy Farming using Organic (SRI) Method by Day at Sik

Method of SRI farming (Sik)

[*Day (D) *]

*Note *

*Activity *

D1- D14

Ploughing by tractor


Release water into the paddy field



Ploughing by small tractor

of soil / land


Third cycle, making lanes


Scattering of organic fertilizer



Soak seeds for planting

*Day After *

*Planting *

*Note *

*Activity *

[*(DAP) *]

DAP 5 – 8


Paddy seedlings are transferred to the paddy


DAP 90


Drain out the water


DAP 110 -115



[_ Note_]: Weeding is carried out as much as four times from the 10th to the 40th day.

  • *

  • *

Table 2: Summary of Paddy Farming using Organic (SRI) Method by Day at BBT

Method of SRI farming (BBT: Bandar Baru Tunjong)

[*Day (D) *]

*Note *

*Activity *

D1- D14


Ploughing by tractor


of soil / land

Release water into the paddy field


Ploughing by small tractor (kabota)


Third cycle, making lanes


Scattering of organic fertilizer



Soak seeds for planting

*Day After *

*Planting *

*Note *

*Activity *

[*(DAP) *]

DAP 8 – 12


Paddy seedlings are transferred to the paddy


DAP 90


Drain out the water


DAP 110 -




Note: 1. Organic fertilizer is put into the soil one week before planting; 2. Weeding

is carried out as much as four times from the 10th to the 40th day.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

*Challenges in sustainable farming *




development and secondly, government

This study also showed that there were three

intervention in implementing laws relating

challenges in implementing sustainable

to the maintenance and control of agriculture

paddy farming. These were: awareness and





early education in sustainable paddy





farming, management transition, and high

agricultural development that takes into

work commitment as shown in Figure 1.






These are further explained below.

prerequisite that determines the success or






Awareness and education[* *]

development programme.






  • *

sustainable paddy farming is vital. It is

Management transition[* *]

hoped that innovations through ICT would

The next challenge is management transition

provide meaningful contributions.

from conventional farming to organic

During this study, it was found that

farming. In reality, there are several

most paddy farmers were lacking in

challenges in the current implementation of

awareness and education regarding organic

rice management, among them are:

farming practices. Therefore it is pertinent

  • *

that farmers and youth could be educated on

*i. *

*Unsatisfactory outcome *






Most farmers are categorized under

practices in paddy farming. * *

low incomes. A study conducted in

According to Mustapha and Mohd

1990 showed that 60 percent of the

Jani (1995), agricultural projects must

household or rice field employees

prioritize social interest and long-term

were either poor or extremely poor.

economic goals rather than short-term

After 10 years, however research

interests by implementing programmes that

showed farmer’s poverty rate had

minimizes the destruction of resource.

reduced to 40 percent.

Nevertheless, any attempt to make the

The income of rice farmers is

society aware requires the intervention from

low due to the uneconomical size of

the government because of two factors.

the fields which is mainly unprofita-

Firstly, the policy formulation which

Sustainable characteristic

Sustainable Paddy Farming

1. Balancing ecosystem


  • Challenges*

2. Input from sustainable

1. Land preparation

1. Awareness and education


2. Seeds preparation

2. Management transition

3. No chemical or synthetic

3. Water management

3. High work commitment

fertiliser and pesticide

4. Fertilizers

5. Control (weed, pest and disease)

4. Natural control (pest,

6. Harvest

disease and weed)

Figure 1: The proposed model describing the key areas of sustainable and organic paddy

farming practices.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

-ble. The majority of farmers

cities and work in the manufacturing





and other sectors than growing rice.

inheritance, and poverty forces most

Therefore, the present Malaysian rice

farmers to find other jobs to increase

farmers’ average age has actually

their income. Thus, most small scale

exceeded retirement age. Due to old

rice farmers with low income make

age and low income, they work on

paddy farming as their part time

their rice fields just to fulfill their


basic daily needs.

This opinion is supported by

MADA (2005) whereby many low

*v. *

*Incomplete infrastructure, water *

income rice farmers face financial

*shortage *

difficulty and need loans to support

Lack of infrastructure and weak

the family. Unfortunately, loans

irrigation system are also the main

become a burden and three quarter of

problems faced by many rice farmers

MADA farmers are classified as

in Malaysia.


High work commitment[* *]

*ii. *

*Demand exceeds production *

Organic paddy farming requires a high

Rice production in Malaysia is

commitment from farmers. This is supported

insufficient to cater to the country’s

by information extracted from an interview

needs, and around 30% of rice is

with an organic farmer who believes that





farming organically require sacrifice and

Vietnam. According to MADA, on


average, paddy production yield in

“[_To ensure that this (pointing to his _]

Malaysia is 4.2 tonnes per hectare

[_paddy field) is good, more sacrifice is _]

per season (MADA, 2009), which is

_required. It requires wisdom. By doing this, _

considered low. Thus, the country

[_the outcome is better. – _](Farmer 4, personal

cannot meet its own demand.

communication, July 23, 2009). _ _

Farmers who consider organic rice

*iii. *

*High production cost *

cultivation as a part-time job will not be able

Production cost of rice in Malaysia is

to run it effectively. This is because waste

high and this has compelled the

from agricultural products need to be

government to intervene by offering

recycled, for example it should be turned





into compost. Apart from that, pest, disease

various types of input given by the

and weed control should be done naturally.

government in the form of subsidies,

This will be difficult if the farm

such as seed, fertilizer and price

environment is damaged or polluted.

subsidies, were to be taken away, it

According to organic farmers in Bandar

would be difficult to attract a person

Baru Tunjong, they face environmental

to venture into rice agriculture.

problems and an in balanced ecosystem

because of long term usage of chemical

*iv. *

*Labor shortage *


The rice farming sector in Malaysia

Ismail (2006) also agrees that the

faces a problem of labor shortage.

transition from conventional to organic

The youth are keen to migrate to the







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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

commitment. According to him, this

*Bagheri, A., Fami, H. S., Rezvanfar, A., *

conversion is a difficult move because the

[*Asadi, A., and Yazdani, S. (2008). *]

positive impact, if there is any, can only be

Perceptions of Paddy Farmers towards

gained in the long term.

Sustainable Agricultural Technologies:

  • *

Case of Haraz Catchments Area in






_American Journal of Applied Sciences, _

SRI is an innovative system for the organic

5[*(10), *]



agricultural practices aimed at preserving


the nature and environment. SRI is also a

methodology in organic paddy farming

[*Ismail, M. R. (2006). *] _Pertanian Lestari. _

practices. Our study outcome suggests that

Kuala Lumpur: Dewan Bahasa dan

for a sustainable organic paddy farming the

Pustaka. (p.35)

proposed model, as shown in Figure 1, the 3

  • *






*Murad, M. W., Mustapha, N. H. N., and *

characteristics; 2) sustainable paddy farming

*Siwar, *

*C. *

[*(2008). *]



practices; and 3) challenges in sustainable

Malaysian Agricultural Policies with

farming. This study made a significant

Regards to Sustainability. _American _

contribution in the agricultural sector, in line

_Journal of Environmental Sciences, _

with the objective of Agro Makanan Policies

4(6), 608-614.

(2011-2020) which is to guarantee adequate

and safe supply of food for consumption.

*Mustapha, N. H. and Mohd Jani, M. F. *

However, other factors such as good

[*(1995). *]

_Pembangunan _

_Pertanian _



_et. _



_Lestari. _ Selangor:Penerbit UKM. (p.25)

interactive and cooperation between farmer;

government, research institution; and the

[*National Green Technology Policy (2009). *]

role of the policy-maker are important

Ministry of Energy, Green Technology

factors in achieving sustainable agriculture

and Water, Malaysia.

(Murad et al, 2008; Sharghi et al, 2010).

More research is required on the sustainable

*Othman, Z., Muhammad, A. and Abu *

agriculture and organic farming in Malaysia

[*Bakar, M. A. (2010). *] A Sustainable

for the better understanding and addressing

Paddy Farming Practice in West

the issues.

Malaysia. _The International Journal of _

  • *

Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, 5[*(2), *]



The authors would like to express their

*Othman, S. N., Othman, Z. and Yaacob, *

gratitude to Captain Zakaria Kamantasha,

[*N. A. (2016). *] The Value Chain of

Managing Director of Sri Lovely Farm, Sik,

System of Rice Intensification (SRI)

Kedah for extending his cooperation to write

Organic Rice of Rural Farms in

this paper.


_International _

_Journal _

_of _

Supply Chain Management, 5(3), 111-


*120. *

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Sustainable Agriculture through Organic Farming Othman and Hasan

[*Othman, Z. and Muhammad, A. (2011). *]

5[*(2), *]








learning for promoting sustainable

practices in paddy farming. _American _

[*Uphoff, N. (2006). *] The System of Rice

_Journal of Economics and Business _

Intensification (SRI) as a Methodology

Administration, [*3(1), 197-202. *]

for Reducing Water Requirements in

  • *



Production. _ _

*Sharghi, T., Sedighi, H., and Eftekhari, *

_International Dialogue on Rice and _

[*A. R. (2010). *] Effective Factors in

[_Water: Exploring Options for Food _]



_Security _

_and _

_Sustainable _

Agriculture. _American _

_Journal _

_of _

Environments, Philippines, March 7-8,

_Agricultural and Biological Sciences, _


ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 50

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P51-59 _]

[*Environmental Legislations in Malaysia: A *]

*Protection to Public Health *

*Haslinda Mohd Anuar *

[_School of Law, College of Law, Government and International Studies (COLGIS), Universiti _]

_Utara Malaysia, 06010 Sintok, Kedah, Malaysia _

[_ Phone No.: +6 04-9288106; Email : [email protected] _]

  • *


The importance between human and environment was first recognized by Stockholm Declaration

in 1972. This interdependent was further developed by Rio Declaration 1992 whereby the

concept of sustainable development was widely introduced. Although the main theme was

‘development’, Principle 1 of the Rio Declaration proclaims that ‘ _Human beings are at the _

_centre of concerns for sustainable development. They are entitled to a healthy and productive life _

in harmony with nature ’. Rio Declaration 1992 was further strengthened with Rio +20 in 2012

whereby more agenda have been defined ‘ _to a safer, more equitable, cleaner, greener and more _

[_prosperous world for all’. _] In Malaysia, various legislations and national policies have been

implemented to achieve sustainable development including with enactment of Environmental

Quality Act 1974; Dasar Alam Sekitar Negara; and Dasar Perubahan Iklim Negara as the basis

of environmental management. However, there are more than forty environmental related

legislations been enforced by various government agencies in Malaysia. Furthermore, in 2013,

during the Third Ministerial Regional Forum on Environment and Health in South East and East

Asian Countries held in Kuala Lumpur member countries agreed to cooperate to develop and

implement National Environmental Health Action Plans (NEHAP) that aims ‘ _to put sustainable _

_environment and health at the centre of development, and that will result in sustainability and _

_improvements in environmental quality, and enhancement of public health, and ensure the health _

of the future generations in the region’. This chapter will discuss primarily the development of

environmental legislations including the national policies in Malaysia which aim to protect the

public health.

Keywords: Environment; health; legislation; policy.


elements should be considered as part of

rights to life and health (Boyd, 2011;

Clean air, clean water, fertile soil and

Weissbrodt, 2007; Dowdeswell, 1994).

functioning ecosystems are the integral part






of human survival and well-being, and it

Organization, approximately one-quarter of

was argued by many scholars that these

the entire burden of disease globally is

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

attributable to environmental risk factors (A.

  • *

Pruss-Ustun, 2006). Human activity is the



major threat to environment and every


component of the environment is constantly


threatened due to destruction of natural

  • *

resources due to increasing human demand

*International instruments *

and development activities. In this situation,

laws are essential in guiding enforcement

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

efforts and in the formulation of subsequent

was adopted in 1948 by the General

policies in carrying out environmental

Assembly of the United Nations. Human

requirements (Rahman, 2010).

rights are derived from the principle of

Malaysia faces numerous diverse

Natural Law whereby ‘ [_Human (person) _]

range of environmental issues and problems.

_possesses rights because of the very fact that _

There are: air pollution; water pollution;

_it is a person, a whole, a master of itself and _

sound and noise pollution; agro-chemical

[_of its acts…by natural law, the human _]

pollution; degradation of ground water level;

_person has the right to be respected, is the _

filling of lakes abd water bodies; acid rain;

subject of rights’ (Shradha Sinha, 2005).





Asia Pacific Forum on Human




Rights and the Environment (2007) defined

global warming; terrorist activities; politics

that environmental rights as right to






environment, a ‘ _right of the people to a _

adminstration; solid waste management;

healthful environment’, a right to live in an

unplanned urbanisation; hazardous waste;

‘ _environment and surroundings which are _

water crisis; disease outbreak; landslides and

condusive to health’, and a right to ‘ _use _

landslips; polythene use; and sectoral

_natural resources in accordance with _




_customary traditions and practices which _


[_encourage community-based sustainable _]

This paper will give an overview on

natural resource management’. According

right to live in healthy environment or




‘‘ _environmental _

‘environmental rights’ with particularly

[_rights’ have been defined as both individual _]

focus on environmental health. Various

_and _

_collective, _

_both _

_substantive _

_and _

international instruments will be discussed






including the Stockholm Declaration 1972

‘environmental rights’ have been ‘ _derived _

and the Rio Declaration 1992. At National

_from the existing universally recognised _

level, the Articles in Federal Constitution

_rights, both with regard to substantive rights _

and the Environmental Quality Act 1974

[_(such as the rights to life, health and _]

will be examined accordingly. To further

[_privacy) and procedural rights (namely, _]

strengthen the laws by way of action

_access to information and due process of _

National Environmental Health Action Plan

law)’. Environmental Science Dictionary





defined the environmental rights as a right

implemented by the Ministry of Health. All

enjoyed by all members of society that

these legislations are enforced to ensure that

people can live and work in healthy, safe

the sustainable development is achieved for

and comfortable environment. It also states

a better standard of healthy living for

that it includes the right to life and healthy,

present and future generations.

the right of property security and the right of

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

comfortable environment for living and

Environment included the proposed right to


secure, healthy and ecologically sound

The words ‘clean’ and ‘healthy’

environment. Since then, many countries

environment is interconnected. It may be







stated that a clean environment is a human

environment in their Constitutions (Boyd,

right; and health is a state of complete

2011). According to Law (2011), in total

physical, mental and social well-being and

there are more than 100 countries that have

not merely the absence of disease or

recognized the right to live in a healthy

infirmity. The scope of creating a healthy

environment either explicitly or through

environment is clealy not limited to

judicial interpretation of other provisions.

hospitals and doctor’s surgeries, but includes

These include Norway, Albania, Spain,

the myraid factors that influence to health,

Argentina, Jamaica, Mexico, Paraguay,

agriculture and food, education, employment

Azerbaijan, Indonesia, Thailand, Venezuela,

status, and working envirinment, water and

Burundi, Egypt, Kenya, South Africa and






many more.

(Mohammad, 2014).

Besides the state constitution, there

Stockholm Declaration 1972 has

are also a number of regional agreements

recognized the relationship between human

that explicitly recognized the right to a

and development. Principle 1 of the





Stockholm Declaration declared that, ‘ _man _

instruments are the African Charter on

_has the fundamental right to freedom, _

Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Additional

_equality and adequate condition of life, in an _

Protocol to the American Convention on

_environment of quality that permits a life of _

Human Rights, the Arab Charter on Human

[_dignity and well-being, and he bears a _]

Rights, and the Aarhus Convention on

_solemn responsibility to protect and improve _

Access to Information, Public Participation

_the environment for present and future _

in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in

[_generations’. _] Stockholm Declaration 1972

Environmental Matters.

referred to ‘ _an environment of a quality that _





permits a life of dignity and well-being’.

tribunals like the European Court of Human

Then, the United Nations Conference

Rights (ECHR), the European Committee of

on Environment and Development 1992,

Social Rights, the International Court of

known as the Earth Summit, produced Rio

Justice (ICJ) and the Inter-American

Declaration on Human Environment and

Commission on Human Rights have

Development (the Rio Declaration) that










conventions to include the right to a healthy

development, that is, development that

environment. For example, ICJ in the case

meets the developmental and environmental

of Hungary v Slovakia opined that, ‘ _The _

needs of present and future generation.

[_protection of the environment is… a vital _]

Principle 1 of the Rio Declaration states that,

_part of contemporary human rights doctrine, _

“[_Human beings are at the centre of concerns _]

_for it is a sine qua non for numerous human _

_for sustainable development. They are _

_rights such as the right to health and the _

_entitled to a healthy and productive life in _

[_right to life itself…damage to the _]

[_harmony with nature”. _]

_environment can impair and undermine all _

In 1994, the report of the UN Special

_the rights spoken of in the Universal _

Rapporteur on Human Rights and the

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

_Declaration and other human rights _

Federal Constitution contain all different

[_instruments’. _]

components of the environments. For

example, matters of federal responsibility

*Malaysian legislations *






resources; pest control; and many industrial

An ‘environmental right’ is not expressly

and infrastructural activities. Matters of state

provided for under Malaysian Federal

responsibility include land; agriculture and

Constitution or any law. Fundamental

forestry; and state work and water. Matters

liberties or human rights such as liberty of a

of concurrent list include public health; town

person, freedom of speech, freedom of

and country planning; and drainage and

movement and right to property are secured


under the Malaysian Federal Constitution,

There are moves to insert the right to

and ‘environmental rights’ or right to a

healthy and clean environment in the

healthy environment are yet to be explicitly

Federal Constitution. The Environmental

included as one of the constitutional rights.

Law Review Committee in 1992 was

In Tan Tek Seng v Suruhanjaya

reported to make such recommendation

Perkhidmatan Pendidikan, Court of Appeal

(Ministry of Science, Technology and

ruled that, [_‘…the expression ‘life’ appearing _]

Environment, 1992), and in 1996 CAP-SAM

[_in Article 5(1) does not refer to mere _]

National Conference of the Environment in

_existence. It incorporates all those facets _

Malaysia stated that, ‘ _Since environmental _

[_that are an integral part of life itself… it _]

_protection is crucial to ensure the survival _

_includes the right to live a reasonably _

_of mankind and other living things, as had _

healthy and pollution free environment’.

_been acknowledged by world leaders during _

Similarly, in Adong bin Kuwau & Ors v

_the Rio Conference, it is timely that Part II _

Kerajaan Negeri Johor & Anor, the case was

_of the Constitution which deals with _

decided based on Article 13 of the Federal

_fundamental liberties be amended to provide _

Constitution which provides for right to

_for the right to a clean and safe _

property. The court although pronounced


that the plaintiffs (the aborigines) have

The main environmental legislation

propriety rights over the Linggui valley and

in Malaysia is the Environmental Quality

the defendants had deprived them the rights,

Act 1974. It covers a wide range of

failed to make any reference that such






deprivation was tantamount to denial to

pollution, noise pollution, pollution on land,

healthy and decent environment to live for

and pollution of inland water. Besides that,

the aborigines. This is the effect of non-

there are other legislations enacted on

explicit provision on the right to healthy

matters relating to the environment such as

environment under the Federal Constitution.

Land Conservation Act 1960, Wildlife Act

The Court of Appeal has interpreted the

1972, National Park Act 1980, National

right to life broadly as extending beyond

Forestry Act 1984, and Fisheries Act 1985.

mere existence to the quality of life, and

The existence of these legislations indicates

‘ [_[including] the right to live in a reasonably _]

the importance of environmental protection

healthy and pollution free environment’.

and management in Malaysia.

Although the Federal Constitution

The Department of Environment was

does not mention about ‘environment’ in

created in 1975 under the Ministry of

any of its Article, the legislative lists in the

Science, Technology and the Environment

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

to manage and administer the environmental

Environmental protection and public health

quality in Malaysia. As a federal agency, it

goals are in general replenishing each other.

does not appear to be full control over

The term environmental health, as defined

environmental resources. As mentioned

by World Health Organisation, addressed all

earlier, matters relating to land, forest and

physical, chemical, and biological factors

water resources are under the jurisdiction of

external to a person, and all the related

the state and enacted under different

factors impacting behavior. It encompasses

legislations, which are not under the charge

the assessment and control of those

of the Department of Environment. For an

environmental factors that can potentially

effective environmental management and

affect health. It is targeted towards

implementation, total cooperation between

preventing disease and creating health-

the state and federal authorities are required.

supportive environments (NEHAP Malaysia,

Some environmental initiatives have

2016). In other word, environmental health






is the branch of public health that is

development. Malaysian Plan provides a

concerned with all aspects of the natural and

road map of socio economic aspects of the

built environment that may affect human

country. The Seventh Malaysian Plan clearly

health (NEHAP Malaysia, 2016).

states that clean, safe, and healthy living

The NEHAP has been developed and

environment are to be achieved for our

implemented by many countries to address

present and future generations. Besides the

environmental health problems and needs

Department of Environment which was

for action. In the Third Ministerial Regional

established under the Environmental Quality

Forum on Environmental and Health in

Act 1974, the local governments has been

South East and East Asian Countries held in

performing a wide range of services such as

Kuala Lumpur in September 2013, the

public health and cleansing, enforcement

Kuala Lumpur Declaration was affirmed to;

and licensing, and public amenities and

[_“Agree to cooperate to develop and _]

social services. Malaysia has also actively

_implement national environmental health _

participating and implementing various

[_action plans (NEHAPs), or equivalent plans, _]

provisions of international instruments for

_that aims to put sustainable environment _

example Amendment to the Montreal

_and health at the centre of development, and _

Protocol on Substances that Deplete the

_that will result in sustainability and _

Ozone Layer in (Date of Ratification: 14

_improvements in environmental quality, and _

September 1993); The United Nations

_enhancement of public health, and ensure _

Conventions on Biological Diversity 1992

_the health of the future generations in the _

(Date of Ratification: 22 September 1994);

[_region; Agree to work for the development _]

and The Basel Convention on the Control of

_and implementation of mechanism to enable _

Transboundary Movements of Tropical

_mire effective sharing of information _






_between the health and environment sectors _

Ratification: 1994). These initiatives, again,

_and _

_other _

_sectors _

_through _

_the _






_Environmental Health Country Profiles _

stakeholders to ensure the aim of sustainable

[_(EHCP) and Environmental Data Sheets _]

development is achieved.

[_(EHDS)” _] (Figure 1) _. _

  • *

Based on the National Policy on


Environment which aims at continued

economic, social and culture progress and

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

Figure 1: A schematic diagram depicts the mechanism adopted in Malaysia’s Nati


Environmental Health Action Plan (NEHAP) (Source: NEHAP Malaysia, 2016).

  • *

enhancement of the quality of life of

Environment and Health in Southeast and

Malaysians through environmentally sound

East Asian Countries (NEHAP Malaysia,

and sustainable development, the Economic


Planning Unit of the Prime Minister’s

1. Air Quality

Department was agreed that NEHAP was to

2. Water, sanitation and hygiene

be developed in the 9th Malaysia Plan by the

3. Solid and hazardous waste

Ministry of Health. The main objectives to

4. Toxic chemicals and hazardous

NEHAP are; (1) To strengthen collaboration


and cooperation between various sectors for

5. Climate change, ozone depletion and

effective use of resources in improving

ecosystem change

human health and sustainable development;

6. Contingency planning, preparedness

(2) To develop and maintain human health

and response in environmental health

and sustainable development through the


management of environmental health with a

7. Environmental



systematic and holistic manner in the



  • *

The followings are environmental

The implementation mechanism comprises

health areas of concern which have been

of a three-tier approach and lead agency to

identified on the Regional Initiative on

implement it has been identified (Figure 2).

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

  • *

Figure 2: A schematic diagram showing the responsibilities of lead agencies (NEHAP) (Source:

NEHAP Malaysia, 2016).





cooperation from all players.

Environment rights and environmental

health are definitely important issues that


must be clearly address by all stakeholders

including the authorities, private sectors,

[*Pruss-Ustun. A. (2006). *] _Preventing Disease _

public and non-governmental organizations

_Through _

_Healthy _

[_Environments: _]

(NGOs). Environmental issues are not only

_Towards _

_an _

_Estimate _

_of _

_the _

affecting the present generation but also will

_Environmental _

_Burden _

_Disease. _

have impact on future generations. In line

World Health Organization.

with United Nations policies, Malaysia have

a long list of environmental legislations;

*Aarhus *

*Convention *

*on *

*Access *

*to *

however, these instruments could not be

*Information, Public Participation *

[*in Decision-Making and Access to *]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 57

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _

Justice in Environmental Matters

_Environmental _

_Law _

_Review _

(Aarhus, 25 June 1998).

_Committee, _

_Department _

_of _

_Environment. _



*Additional Protocol to the American *

Ministry of Science, Technology and

Convention on Human Rights (San


Salvador Protocol, 17 November


*Mohammad, *

*N. *

[*(2011). *]





Adong bin Kuwau & Ors v Kerajaan

Malaysia: A Case Study. _British _

Negeri Johor and Anor (1997) 1 MLJ

_Journal of Humanities and Social _

418 (High Court); (1998) 1 CLJ

Sciences 3*[*(1), 46].

Supp. 419.

[*Mohammad, N. (2014). *] Environmental

[*African Charter on Human and Peoples’ *]

Rights for Administering Clean ad

Rights (Banjul, 27 June 1981).







Arab Charter on Human Rights (Tunis,





22 May 2004).

_International Journal of Business _

and Management 9*[*(8), 191].

*Asia Pacific Forum on Human Rights and *

[*the Environment. (2007). *] _Final _

[*Mukherjee, R. (2002). *] _Environmental _

_Report _

_and _

_Recommendations. _

_Management and Awareness Issues. _


New Delhi: Sterling Publishers

Private Limited.

*Boyd, *

*D. *

*R. *

[*(2011). *]



_ _

Constitutional Right to Live in a





Healthy Environment. _Review of _

nehapmalaysia on 15 Ogos 2016:

_European _

_Community _

[_& _]


_International Environmental Law _

2, 171.

[*Rahman, H. A. (2010). *] Human Rights to

Environment in Malaysia. _Health _

[*Dowdeswell, E. (1994). *] _Development of _

and the Environment Journal 1[*(1), *]

_International _

_Law. _





[*Shradha Sinha, m. s. (2005). *] _A Text Book _

[*Hungary v Slovakia (1997). *] ICJ Rep. 151

_of Environmental Studies. _ New

at 206






[*Law, D. (2011). *] The Evolution and




*Tan *

*Tek *

*Seng *

*v *

*Suruhanjaya *

Constitutionalism. _California Law _

Perkhidmatan Pendidikan (1996) 2 CLJ

Review, pp. 1163-1257.

771, at 801.

*Ministry of Science, Technology and *

*Weissbrodt, *

*D. *

[*(2007). *]

_International _

[*Environment. (1992). *] _Report of _

[_Human Rights Law: An Introduction. _]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 58

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environmental Legislations in Malaysia Mohd Anuar _ _




Pennsylvania Press.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 59

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P60-73 _]

The Echinoderm (Sea Cucumber) Fisheries in the Indo-

[*Pacific Region: Emerging Prospects, Potentials, Culture and *]

*Utilization *

  • *

*M. Aminur Rahman1, * and Fatimah Md. Yusoff1, 2 *

  • *

_1Laboratory of Marine Biotechnology, Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 _

UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia; 2Department of Aquaculture, Faculty of Agriculture, Uni-

_versiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia _

[_*Corresponding author; Email: [email protected] _] [_/ [email protected] _]


Echinoderms belong to the bottom-dwelling sessile invertebrates are considered as the high-

valued marine bioresource, having profound biological, ecological, aquacultural, conservational,

nutritional and pharmaceutical significance. The phylum Echinodermata is divided into five ex-

tant classes: Asteroidea (sea stars), Ophiuroidea (brittle stars), Echinoidea (sea urchins and sand

dollars), Crinoidea (sea lilies or feather stars) and Holothuroidea (sea cucumbers). Among them,

the sea cucumbers are both commercially fished and heavily overexploited. The principal prod-

uct in the sea cucumber, is the boiled and dried body-wall or ‘beche-de-mer’ for which there is

an increasing demand in many tropical and subtropical countries and also have long been consid-

ered as a priced delicacy and medicinal cure for the peoples of Asia over many decades. In the

nutritional point of view, sea cucumbers are enriched with valuable nutrients such as Vitamin A,

Vitamin B1 (thiamine), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (niacin), and minerals, especially

calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc. A comprehensive number of unique biological and pharma-

cological activities including anti-angiogenic, anticoagulant, anticancer, anti-hypertension, anti-

inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antithrombotic, antitumor and wound healing have

been attributed to various species of sea cucumbers. They have also long been well recognized as

a tonic and traditional remedy in Chinese and Malaysian literature for their effectiveness against,

asthma, rheumatism, tuberculosis, stomach and duodenum ulceration, diabetes, aplastic anaemia,

cuts and burns, impotence and constipation. In order to meet up the increasing market demands,

the collection of sea cucumbers from the wild has seen a depletion of this resource in the tradi-

tional fishing grounds close to Asia and more recently the expansion of this activity to new and

more distant fishing grounds. Presently, there has been documented that, sea cucumbers fisheries

are harvesting around most of the resource range areas, including the remote parts of the Pacific,

the Galapagos Islands, Chile and the Russian Federation. This review shows that sea cucumber

stocks are under intense fishing pressure in many parts of the world and need effective aquacul-

ture management and conservation measures. It also shows that sea cucumbers provide an im-

portant contribution to economies and livelihoods of coastal communities, being the most com-

mercially important fishery and non-finfish export in many countries. Reconciling the need for

conservation with the socio-economic importance of sea cucumber fisheries is shown to be a

challenging endeavour, particularly for the countries with limited management capacity. Current

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al research directions are looking at diversifying technology to increase success in a range of

coastal conditions, better understanding the social and biophysical conditions required for suc-

cess, and finding ways of effectively scaling-out developed systems and culture technology.

Moreover, no single management measure will work optimally due to the many eccentricities of

these important fisheries, which are outlined in this document through a brief review of their bio-

logical, ecological, aquacultural, biomedicinal, conservational, economic and social dimensions.

[*Keywords: *] Aquaculture; beche-de-mer; biomedicine; breeding; larval rearing; life cycle;

nutraceuticals; sea cucumber


familiarly known as ‘beche-de-mer’ or

‘gamat’, for which there is an increasing

In the recent decades, invertebrate fisheries

demand for food delicacy and folk medicine

have expanded in catch and value worldwide

in the communities of Asia and Middle East

(Anderson et al., 2011). One increasingly

(Yaacob et al., 1997; Huizeng, 2001;

harvested marine invertebrates group is sea

Bordbar et al., 2011). There is also a trade in

cucumbers, belong to the class Holothu-

sea cucumbers for home aquaria and bio-

roidea under the phylum Echinodermata,

medical products (Bruckner et al., 2003).

which usually occur in the shallow benthic

Sea cucumber fisheries had rapidly grown

areas and deep seas across the world

and expanded due to the growing beche-de-

(Bordbar et al., 2011). Sea cucumbers are

mer-related international market, supported

elongated tubular or flattened soft-bodied

by continuing demand of these organisms

marine benthic invertebrates, typically with

for aquaculture and biomedical research

leathery skin, ranging in length from a few

programs (Kelly, 2005; Bordbar et al.,

millimetres to a metre (Backhuys, 1977;

2011). They have high commercial value

Lawrence, 1987). Holothuroids encompass

coupled with increasing global production

14000 known species (Pawson, 2007) and

and trade and therefore, commercially fished

occur in most benthic marine habitats

and heavily overexploited in some areas

worldwide, in temperate and tropical oceans,

(Kelly, 2005; Bordbar et al., 2011). The

and from the intertidal zone to the deep sea

widespread and growing interest in this

(Hickman et al., 2006). The fisheries of sea

commodity is indicative of strong market-

cucumber have expanded worldwide in

based drivers to increase production of sea

catch and value over the past two to three

cucumber (Brown et al., 2010). It also

decades (Conand, 2004; FAO, 2008). Global

shows that sea cucumbers provide an im-

sea cucumber production increased from

portant contribution to economies and live-

130,000 t in 1995 to 411,878 t in 2012

lihoods of coastal communities, being the

(Rahman et al., 2015). Among other aquatic

most economically important fishery and

animals, overall production of dried sea cu-

non-finfish export in many countries (Toral-

cumbers has increased rapidly (Figure 1).

Granda et al., 2008). Reconciling the need

However, sea cucumber fisheries in Asian

for conservation with the socio-economic

countries (China, Japan, India, Philippines,

importance of sea cucumber fisheries is

Indonesia and Malaysia) have been depleted

shown to be a challenging endeavour, par-

due to overexploitation as well as lack of

ticularly for the countries with limited man-

effective management and conservation

agement capacity. Moreover, no single man-

strategies. The major product in the sea cu-

agement measure will work optimally due to

cumber is the boiled and dried body-wall,

the many idiosyncrasies of these fisheries.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al Many sea cucumber fisheries still have no

fore settling and undergoing metamorphosis

management system or restrictions, and for

to the juvenile sea cucumber. The average

those that do, the scenario for catches to

life span of a sea cucumber is thought to be

continue even at a reduced level is poor

5–10 years and most species first reproduce

(Kelly, 2005). Cultivation of these species

at 2–6 years. A number of species are re-

increasingly becomes a necessity, both for

ported to reproduce asexually by fission, and

stock enhancement programs and as a means

this has been examined as a technique to

to meet up market demand.

propagate commercially important species

(Reichenbach et al., 1996). They also have


the capability to eviscerate part or all of their


internal organs as a defence against preda-

tion, the shed organs being rapidly regener-

The species of sea cucumber targeted for


culture, belong to two families, the deposit-

Cultivation of sea cucumbers origi-

feeding Aspidochirotida, which includes the

nated in Japan in the 1930s and juveniles of

Holothuriidae and the Stichopodidae, and

the temperate species Stichopus japonicus

the suspension feeding Dendrochirotida,

(Figure 2A) were first produced in 1950

which includes the genus Cucumaria. The

(Battaglene et al., 1999). During the last 15

cultivatable species of sea cucumbers are

years, commercial production in Japan has

dioecious, broadcast spawners, the fertilized

accelerated, where annually an estimated 2.5

eggs developing into planktonic larvae be-

million juveniles are released. In China, cul-

  • *

Figure 1: World sea cucumber fisheries production from 1950 to 2012 (Rahman et al., 2015).

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 62

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al tured rather than fished S. japonicus now

Brood stock _ _ of Stichopus japonicus

account for around 50% of the country’s es-

is usually collected from the wild in spring,

timated annual production of dry sea cu-

when they attain appropriate sexual maturity

cumber (Kelly, 2005). Procedures for mass

(Kelly, 2005). The broodstock is most com-

culture of the tropical Holothuria scabra

monly induced to spawn through thermal

(Figure 2B) are now well established and

stimulation, by increasing the seawater tem-

practiced in Australia, India, Indonesia, the

perature in holding tanks by 3–5°C for 1 h.






Generally, H. scabra has a biannual peak in

(Battaglene et al., 1999). Other tropical spe-

gonadosomatic index, indicating two spawn-

cies in culture include Actinopyga maurita-

ing periods a year, but closer to the equator a

nia (Figure 2C) and H. fuscogilva (Figure

proportion of the population spawns year-

2D), with the focus of the research effort

round (Battaglene et al., 1999; Kelly, 2005).

centered on the production of juveniles in

Fertilization occurs spontaneously once the

hatcheries for the restoration and enhance-

gametes are allowed to mix in seawater; the

ment of wild stocks (Ramofafia et al., 1996,

fertilized eggs are held in suspension by aer-




  • *



  • *

  • *

  • *

Figure 2: Major commercially important species of sea cucumbers in aquaculture: A) _Stichopus _

japonicas, B) Holothuria scabra, C) Actinopyga mauritania and D) Holothuria fuscogilva (Rahman, 2014a, b).

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al

-ation and egg development is rapid. Larval

Chaetoceros calcitrans (Battaglene et al.,

life cycle of H. scabra is almost around 14

1999; Kelly, 2005).

days at 28°C, including the feeding or auric-

Metamorphosis and settlement are

ularia stage, the doliolaria or non-feeding

critical stages in the development and cul-

stage and settling pentacula stage (Figure 3

ture of sea cucumber larvae. High survival is

and 4). As with many other larval Echino-

dependent on the larvae being competent to

derms, sea cucumber larvae are fed a mix-

metamorphose and then responding to set-

ture of microalgal species, with the number

tlement cues. Competent pentacula (Figure

of algal cells provided gradually being in-

4C) larvae are provided with a substrate of

creased over the larval life to be completed.

bacteria and diatoms, which provide the ap-

Holothuria scabra larvae can feed and grow

propriate settlement cues, and to which they

well on a diet of the red microalgae

adhere with their buccal podia. Typically,

Rhodomonas salina and the brown diatom _ _

Figure 3: Spawning, fertilization and a 14-day larval life-cycle of a cultured sea cucumber ( Hol-

othuria scabra) at a water temperature of 28oC (FAO, 2008; Bruckner et al., 2003).

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al A




Fig u

r e 4: Developmental stages of Holothuria scabra: A) Auricularia; B) Doliolaria; C) Pentac-

tula; and D) Early juvenile.

_S. japonicus _ settles on PVC plates coated

detach. Throughout the juvenile stage it is

with small periphytic diatoms such as Na-

necessary to periodically detach the juve-

vicula, Amphora, _Achnanthes _ and _Nitzchia _

niles from the substrate for grading, transfer

sp. The plates are coated in outdoor tanks in

between tanks or to supply fresh substrates.

direct sunlight, although the light intensity,

KCl (0.5–1%) in seawater is an effective

nutrient enrichment and copepod levels must

agent for detaching H. scabra from settle-

be controlled to produce suitable plates

ment surfaces (Kelly, 2005). The use of KCl

(Kelly, 2005). Leaves of the sea grass ( Thal-

does not harm juvenile sea cucumbers but

lassia hemprichii) are the preferred settle-

does effectively kill some tropical copepods

ment substrate of _H. scabra _ and soluble ex-

(Battaglene et al., 1999).

tracts of the leaves have been shown to in-

After a nursery phase of 6-month,

duce settlement onto clean plastic surfaces

when the juvenile _S. japonicus _ grows to a

(Kelly, 2005). Post-settlement juvenile sea

length of 4–8 cm, are released to managed

cucumbers are grown either on diatom-

areas of the seafloor. They are recovered

coated plates, held in fine mesh bags in

after 1 year when they measure approxi-

tanks or on the bottom of tanks, where juve-

mately 20 cm (Kelly, 2005). There is a lack

niles of 10–20 mm are transferred to a fine

of information on growth rates and survivor-

sand substrate and fed a diet supplemented

ship in tropical species, and, as with all Hol-

by algal extracts or powdered algae. Newly

othuria, measurements of growth are com-

settled juveniles (Fig. 4D) attach firmly to

plicated by their ability to change shape,

settlement surfaces and can be difficult to

eviscerate and retain water and sediment in

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al the gut and coelomic cavity (Kelly, 2005).

icus from aquaculture, mainly to supply lo-

However, Battaglene et al. (1999) suggest

cal demand. Due to the prawn diseases hap-

there should be no impediment to the large-

pened in 1990s, a lots of prawn ponds are

scale production of juvenile H. scabra for

unused, so the farmers started pond culture

stock enhancement programs provided they

of sea cucumber in Shan Dong province and

can be released at a size of 6 cm and with a

Dalian. Currently pond culture has become

weight of 20 g. The three months it takes to

the most suitable method of sea cucumber

reach juvenile H. scabra of this size (Figure

farming (Figure 6). In the Asia Pacific re-

5) and the ease of rearing them under active

gion, aquaculture is still in the early devel-

consideration for grow-out culture and stock

opment stages, with one species of sea cu-

enhancement (Battaglene et al., 1999).

cumber ( Holothuria scabra) in trials to as-

certain the commercial viability of culture

and farming options. Many additional

threats have been identified for sea cucum-

ber populations worldwide, including global

warming, habitat destruction, unsustainable

fishing, the development of fisheries with

little or no information on the species, and

lack of natural recovery after overexploita-

tion. Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported

(IUU) fisheries are widespread in all re-

gions, representing an indirect threat as it

fuels unsustainable practices and socio-

economic demand. The critical status of sea

cucumber fisheries worldwide is compound-

ed by different factors including i) the lack

of financial and technical capacity to gather

basic scientific information to support man-

agement plans, ii) weak surveillance and

enforcement capacity, and iii) lack of politi-

cal will and socio-economic pressure exert-

ed by the communities that rely on this fish-

  • *

ery as an important source of income. The

Figure 5: Three-month old juveniles of _H. _

fast pace of development of sea cucumber

scabra for grow-out culture and stock en-

fisheries to supply the growing international


demand for beche-de-mer is placing most

fisheries and many sea cucumber species at

Aquaculture, sea ranching and re

risk. The pervasive trend of overfishing, and

stocking have been evaluated as possible

mounting examples of local economic ex-

solutions to wild sea cucumber overexploita-

tinctions, urges immediate action for con-

tion, and some countries have started such

serving stocks biodiversity and ecosystem

ventures (e.g. Australia, China, Kiribati,

functioning and resilience from other stress-

Philippines, Viet Nam and Madagascar).

ors than overfishing (e. g. global warming

Restocking has been considered an expen-

and ocean acidification), and therefore sus-

sive remedy to overfishing. Currently, China

taining the ecological, social and economic

is successfully producing an estimated

10,000 tons, dry weight, of Stichopus japon-

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 66

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al benefits of these natural resources (Toral-um, magnesium, iron and zinc (Tian et al.,

Granda et al., 2008).

2005). A number of unique biological and

pharmacological activities including anti-


angiogenic (Tian et al., 2005), anticancer


(Roginsky et al., 2004), anticoagulant (Na-

gase et al., 1995; Chen et al., 2011), anti-

Majority of the recently available functional

hypertension (Hamaguchi et al., 2010), anti-

foods and therapeutic agents are derived ei-

inflammatory (Collin, 2004), antimicrobial

ther directly or indirectly from a wide varie-

(Beauregard et al., 2001), antioxidant (Al-

ty of terrestrial plants and marine organisms.

thunibat et al., 2009), antithrombotic

Owing to the richest oceanic biodiversity,

(Mourao et al., 1998), antitumor (Zou et al.,

marine organisms are valuable sources of

2003) and wound healing (San Miguel-Ruiz

nutritious foods as well as represent novel

and García-Arrarás, 2007) have been at-

reservoirs of biologically active compounds

tributed to various species of sea cucumbers.

with biomedical applications. Sea cucum-

Therapeutic properties and medicinal

bers are one of the benthic marine inverte-

benefits of sea cucumbers can be linked to

brates which are important as human food

the presence of a wide array of bioactive

source, particularly in some parts of Asia.

compounds, especially triterpene glycosides

Sea cucumbers have been well recognized as

(saponins) (Kerr and Chen, 1995), chon-

a tonic and traditional remedy in Chinese

droitin sulfates (Vieira et al., 1991), gly-

and Malaysian literature for their effective-

cosaminoglycan (Pacheco et al., 2000), sul-

ness against hypertension, asthma, rheuma-

fated polysaccharides (Mourao, and Pereira,

tism, cuts and burns, impotence and consti-

1999), sterols (glycosides and sulfates)

pation (Weici, 1987; Yaacob et al., 1997;

(Goad et al., 1985, phenolics (Mamelona _et _

Wen et al., 2010). Nutritionally, sea cucum-

al., (2007), (Sugawara et al., 2007), lectins

bers have an impressive profile of valuable






nutrients such as Vitamin A, Vitamin B1

(Rafiuddin et al., 2004), glycoprotein, gly-

(thiamine), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin

cosphingolipids and essential fatty acids

B3 (niacin), and minerals, especially calci-

Figure 6: Pictures showing some successful aquaculture practices of sea cucumbers in earthen

ponds at Shan Dong province and Dalian in China (Rahman, 2014b).

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 67

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al (Bordbar et al., 2011). This review is mainly

portunities for future research in partnership

designed to cover the high-value compo-

with industry. In the Philippines, a major

nents and bioactive compounds as well as

focus in the near future will be capacity

the multiple biological and therapeutic prop-

building among local institutions to support

erties of sea cucumbers with respect to ex-

early entrants into the sea-ranching industry.

ploring their potential and significant uses

The establishment of model enterprises is

for functional foods, nutraceutical and

expected to provide a strong basis for tech-

pharmaceutical products human health bene-

nology uptake.

fits (Rahman et al., 2014; Zulfaqar et al.,

Generally, aquaculture operations for

2016a, b). So far, numerous studies have

marine species do not start until the wild

been conducted on sea cucumbers, however,

capture has been diminished to a point

profound potentials still exist to isolate,

where incomes and lifestyle of the people

identify and characterize new compounds

involved are affected when the wild stocks

from different parts of various species of

decline, high market demand for food,

this high-valued marine invertebrate for

nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals raises the

their chemical structure and detailed biolog-

price of the product and, as a result, cultur-

ical properties using spectroscopic and bio-

ing is most likely to become viable commer-

medical approaches and bioactivity-directed

cially. As this article shows, there have been

assays to a greater extent.

dramatic advances in the culture methods of

sea cucumbers in the last 15–20 years, we


can conclude that currently the major obsta-


cles to successful cultivation are indeed fi-

  • *

nancial rather than biological and ecological

We are aware of active research programs in

(Kelly, 2005; Rahman et al., 2015). There-

the Philippines (hatchery, nursery systems,

fore, the fate of the sea cucumber industry is

sea ranching, co-culture, pond culture), Vi-

narrowly linked to that of the fisheries,

etnam (hatchery, pond culture, co-culture,

whose fate will ultimately determine the

sea ranching), Thailand (pond culture, sea

market forces that will shape this rising in-

ranching) and Malaysia (hatchery, sea

dustry in a very productive, significant and

ranching). Strong institutional support, as

worthwhile manner.

well as donor-funded programs, in particu-

lar, will ensure continued development of


sea-ranching and pond-culture systems. Cur-

rent research in these countries is focusing

The authors would like to express their sin-

on technology and system development to

cere thanks and appreciations to Universiti

diversify options for producers, and on fur-

Putra Malaysia (UPM) for providing finan-

ther understanding the optimal socioeco-

cial supports through Research Management

nomic and biophysical preconditions for

Centre (RMC) under the Grant Putra (GP-I)

successful enterprises. Models for scaling

grant vide [Project No. GPI/2014/9450100]

out technology and catalyzing uptake by

to successfully carry out this work.

small-scale producers are being tested across

broad geographic regions. The pond-culture


industry in Vietnam, for example, is current-

  • *

ly growing ‘organically’, with around a doz-

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potentials of sea cucumbers in Malay-

cucumbers. A global review of fisher-

sia. In: Rahman, M.A. and Maeda, K.

ies and trade. FAO Fisheries and Aq-

(eds.). Proceedings of the International

uaculture Technical Paper. No. 516,

Conference on Agricultural, Environ-

Rome, Italy. 317 p. * *

mental and Civil Engineering (AECE-

2016). Emirates Research Publishing,

[*Vieira, R. P., Mulloy, B., and Mourão, P. *]

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. pp. 87–89. * *

A. (1991). Structure of a fucose-

branched chondroitin sulphate from

*Zulfaqar, S., Rahman, M. A. and Yusoff, *

sea cucumber. Evidence for the pres-

F. M. (2016b). Trends, prospects and

ence of 3- O-sulfo-β-D-glucuronosyl

utilizations of sea cucumber fisheries

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 72

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

The Echinoderm Fisheries in the Indo-Pacific Region Rahman et al in Malaysia. _International Journal of _

ronmental Engineering 3(1), 114–116. * *

Advances in Agricultural and Envi-

  • *

  • *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 73

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P74-88 _]

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

*Environment and Its Impact on Human Health *

  • *

Sridevi Chigurupati1, Jahidul Islam Mohammad2 and Kesavanarayanan Krishnan *

*Selvarajan3 *

  • *

_1Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, AIMST University, Semeling, _

_08100, Bedong, Kedah, Malaysia _

_2Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Cyberjaya University College of Medical _

_Sciences, CUCMS, Cyberjaya, 63000, Malaysia _

[_3Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, College of Pharmacy, University of Hail, Hail, _]

[_Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. [***]Corresponding author; Email: [email protected] _]


The World Health Organization (WHO) defines “health” as a state of complete physical, mental

and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. There always exists a

permanent relationship between humans and his environment, our health is to a considerable

extent determined by the environmental quality. The connotations between environmental

pollution and health outcome are, however, complex and often poorly described. Stages of

exposure are often uncertain or unknown because of lack of detailed observations and

predictable variations within any population group. Exposures may occur through a range of

pathways and exposure processes. This book chapter discusses the impact of few important

environmental factors and their impact on human health.

Keywords[*: *]Environment; human health; pollutants; pollution

  • *


environmental pollution, it is difficult to

measure the seriousness, extent, significance

The relationship between human health and

and causes of environment-related diseases.

the physical environment is both obvious

Besides environmental-related factors, there

and obscure. The environment in which

are other causes which can directly or

human beings survive, work and relax, is

indirectly lead to the same health issues

determining his health and well-being.





Mentally and physically many facets of





environment like physical, chemical as well

Morgan, 1997).






The term environment also covers

repercussions on our health, both physically

the influences of external living and non-

and mentally (Daughton and Ternes, 1997;

living, factual and non-factual factors that

Halden, 2008; Halden, 2010). However, the

surround human. In its modern concept,

relation between environment and health is

environment includes not only the water, air

extremely complicated. Despite many health

and soil that form our environment, but also

problems are believed to be associated with

the communal and commercial conditions

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al under which we live (ReVelle and ReVelle,

and mud) and microscopic organisms also

1992; Wildavsky, 1995).

contaminate the water. These impurities are

For expressive purpose, environment

generally derived from the atmosphere,

has been dispersed into three main

catchment area and the soil. However, the

components as follows:

urbanization and industrialization are the

a) Physical: Water, air, soil, wastes,

main causes of the water pollution. The

radiation, etc.






b) Biologic: Plant and animal life

urbanization and industrialization are: (a)

including bacteria, viruses, insects, rodents

_sewage, _ which contains decomposable

and animals, and

organic matter and pathogenic agents, (b)

c) Social: Customs, culture, habits,

industrial and trade wastes, which contain

income, occupation, religion etc.

toxic agents ranging from metal salts to

complex synthetic organic chemicals, ©

The fundamental to man’s health lies

_agricultural pollutants, _ which comprise

mostly in his environment. In fact, much of

fertilizers and pesticides, and (d) _physical _

man’s ill-health can be outlined to hostile

_pollutants, _ via heat (thermal pollution) and






radioactive substances (Abdel-Shafy et al.,

pollution, soil pollution, air pollution, poor


housing conditions, presence of animal

reservoirs and insect vectors of diseases

which stance a constant threat to man’s

health. However, often a man is responsible

for the pollution of his environment through

urbanization, industrialization and other

human activities (Park, 2011).

The fundamental connection between

human health related effects and distribution

of specific substances in that specific

environment had been often tough or not

perceptible. The specific contribution of

each of the different causes of health

problems is difficult to determine.


Pure sterilized water does not occur in

nature. It contains numerous of impurities as

well as natural and man-made (Figure

1A&B) environmental water pollutants. The

natural impurities are not fundamentally

dangerous. These consist of dissolved gases

(e.g. nitrogen, carbon dioxide, hydrogen

sulphide, etc.) and dissolved minerals (e.g.

  • *

[*Figure 1(A&B): *]Examples of man-made

salts of calcium, magnesium, sodium, etc.)

water pollution.

which are natural elements of water.

Suspended impurities (e.g. clay, silt, sand

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al *Effects on human health *

pollutants in aquatic life (e.g. fish) used as

Men’s health may be affected by the

human food. The concern about chemical

ingestion of contaminated water either

pollutants in water relates not so much as to

directly or through food, and by the use of

their acute toxic effects on human health as

contaminated water for purpose of personal

to the possible long-term effects of low level

hygiene and recreation (Table 1). The term

exposure, which are often non-specific and

water-related disease includes the classical

difficult to detect (Vrzel et al., 2016).

waterborne diseases. Developing countries

In addition to the above, water

carry a heavy burden of water-related

quality is also linked with the following:

diseases, the heaviest being the diarrhoeal

(a) Dental health: The presence of

diseases (Li et al., 2016).

fluoride at about 1 mg/L in drinking water is

known to protect against dental caries; but,

Table 1: Classification of water-related

high levels of fluoride cause mottling of the

diseases[* *]

dental enamel.

*Infective *

(b) Cyanosis in infant: High nitrate

[*agent / *]

[*Water-borne diseases *]

content of water is associated with

*Aquatic host *






_A. Those caused by the presence of an _

occurrence, but may occur when surface

_infective agent _

water from farmland, treated with a

a. Bacterial

Typhoid and Paratyphoid

fertilizer, gain access to the water supply.

fever, Bacillary dysentery,




Diarrhoea, cholera[* *]

Hardness of water appears to have a

b. Helminthic Roundworm, Threadworm,

beneficial effect against cardiovascular

Hydatid disease


c. Leptospiral Weil’s disease

(d) Some diseases are transmitted

d. Protozoal

Amoebiasis, Giardiasis

because of inadequate use of water like

e. Viral

Viral hepatitis A, Hepatitis

shigellosis, trachoma and conjunctivitis,

E, Poliomyelitis, Rotavirus

ascariasis, scabies.

diarrhoea in infants

(e) Some diseases are related to the

_B. Those due to the presence of an aquatic _

disease carrying insects breeding in or near

_host _

water, like: malaria, filaria, arboviruses,

a. Cyclops

Guinea worm, Fish tape

onchocerciasis, and African trypanosomiasis


(also known as sleeping sickness).

b. Snail


While water pollution seems to be an

Chemical _ _ pollutants from industrial

inevitable consequence of modern industrial

and agricultural wastes are progressively

technology, currently, the challenge is to

finding their way into community water

determine the level of pollution that permits

supplies. These pollutants include detergent

economic and social development without

solvents, cyanides, heavy metals, minerals

presenting hazards to health. The evaluation

and organic acids, nitrogenous substances,

of the health effects of environmental

bleaching agents, dyes, pigments, sulphides,

pollutants is currently being carried out by

ammonia, toxic and biocidal organic







compounds of great variety. Chemical

environmental health criteria programme

pollutants may affect a men’s health not only

(Giudice, 2016).

directly, but also indirectly by accumulated

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al *SOIL POLLUTION *

pollution/leakages, out-of-date technology,





Soil is a dynamic part of the natural

management of chemicals or waste materials

environment. It is just as important as

and also the lack of engineer designed

plants, animals, rocks, landforms and rivers.

landfills, pesticides, fertilizers, organic

It affects the distribution of plant species and

manure, chemicals, radioactive wastes,

provides an environment for a wide range of

discarded food, clothes, leather goods,

organisms (Adriano et al., 1999, Gardiner

plastics, paper, bottles, tins-cans and

and Miller 2008; Rajesh et al., 2016). It

carcasses – all contribute towards causing

controls the movement of water and

soil pollution. Chemicals like iron, lead,





mercury, copper, zinc, cadmium, aluminium,

atmosphere and the earth, and acts as both a

cyanides, acids, and alkalis etc. are present

source and store for gases like oxygen and

in industrial wastes that reach the soil either

carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Soils not

directly with water or indirectly through the

only record human activities both at present

air (e.g. through acid rain). The improper

and in the past, but also reflect natural

and continuous use of herbicides, pesticides

processes. Soil together with the plants and

and fungicides to protect the crops from

animals life it supports, the rock on which it

pests, fungi, etc. alter the basic composition

develops its position in the landscape and

of the soils and make the soil toxic to plant

the climate it experiences, form an

growth. Organic insecticides like DDT,

amazingly intricate natural system powerful

aldrin, benzene hexchloride, etc. are used

and complex than any machine that human

against soil borne pests. All these practices

being has created. Soil pollution does cause

also contribute to soil pollution.

huge disturbances in the ecological balance

and the health of the organisms.

*Effects on human health *

To celebrate the importance of soil

and its vital contributions to human health

Generally, people can be exposed to

and safety, the International Union of Soil

contaminants in soil through ingestion,

Sciences established ‘the World Soil Day’ in






2002 (Pierzynski et al., 2005). On December

contamination leads to health risks due to

20, 2013, the 68th UN General Assembly






recognized December 5th, 2014 as World

contaminated soil. Path of human exposure

Soil Day and 2015 as the International Year

to a soil contaminant is different with the

of Soils.

contaminant and with the conditions and

events at a particular site. The effects of

*Reasons for soil pollution *

pollution on soil are quite alarming and can

result in huge disorders in the ecological

Soil pollution is the reason for fall in the

balance and health of man on earth. Crops

productivity of soil. Soil pollutants have a

cannot grow and flourish in a polluted soil;

hostile effect on the physical, chemical and

however, if some crops manage to grow,

biological properties of the soil that leads to

then these crops might have absorbed the

the reduction in soil productivity. Increasing

toxic chemicals in the soil and might





lead to serious health problems in people

wastes, indiscriminate use of agrochemicals,

consuming them. Sometimes, the soil

irrational mining, dumping industrial wastes,

pollution is in the form of increased salinity




of the soil. In such a case, the soil becomes

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al unhealthy










pollution modifies the soil structure, deaths





of many beneficial soil organisms (e.g.

framework that is consistent with the

Earthworms) in the soil could take place.






Other than further reducing the ability of the

protection and reflects the comprehensive

soil to support life, this occurrence could

‘Soil Environment Protection Act’ is

also have an effect on the larger predators

recommended to be established (Policy,

(e.g. Birds) and force them to move to other


places, in the search of food. Figure 2 shows

an example of man-made soil pollution.


People living near polluted land tend

to have higher incidences of migraines,

The term “air pollution” signifies the

nausea, fatigue, skin disorders and even

presence in the ambient (surrounding)

miscarriages. Depending on the pollutants

atmosphere of substances (e.g., gases,

present in the soil, some of the longer-term

mixtures of gases and particulate matter)

effects of soil pollution include cancer,

generated by the activities of man in

leukaemia, reproductive disorders, kidney

concentrations that interfere with human

and liver damage, and central nervous

health, safety or comfort, or injurious to

system failure. These health problems could






be a result of direct poisoning of the polluted

environmental media resulting in chemicals

land (e.g. children playing on land filled

entering the food chain or being present in

with toxic waste) or indirect poisoning (e.g.

drinking-water and thereby constituting

eating crops grown on polluted land,

additional source of human exposure

drinking water polluted by the leaching of

(Lancet, 2016). The direct effect of air

chemicals from the polluted land to the

pollutants on plants, animals and soil can

water supply, etc.).

influence the structure and function of

ecosystems, including self-regulation ability,

thereby affecting the quality of life. In the

past, ‘air pollution’ meant smoke pollution

(Besis et al., 2016). Today, ‘air pollution’

has become subtler and recognizes no

geographical or political boundaries. Air

pollution is one of the present-day health

problems throughout the world (Cai et al.,

2016). The diseases caused by air pollution

are shown in Table 2.

The following are the Sources of air


*Figure *





a. Automobiles: Motor vehicles are

environment[*. *]

a major source of air pollution throughout

the urban areas. They emit hydrocarbons,





carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen oxides and

management framework is critical to the

particulate matter.

establishment of a national soil protection

b. Industries: Industries emit large

management system, for consensus building

amounts of pollutants into the atmosphere.

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al [*Table 2: *]Diseases caused by air pollution.


An infection of lungs

*Airborne *

because of breathing

[*Cause/Remark *]


inside bacteria flying in


Inhaling various

wind pressure and moves


poisonous gases and

into the respiratory


constant suffocation

system of a person who


owing to polluted air[* *]

inhales polluted air.



The ultimate outcome of



constant inhaling of


polluted air.


That is tendency to live


Inhaling various

in isolation


carcinogenic stuff



Due to constant

through polluted air


immune breathing in polluted air.

Weakening of

Constant inhaling of

system defects

lung function

contaminated air


The inflammation and

swelling of the air

Combustion of fuel to generate heat and

passages between nose to

power produces smoke, sulphur dioxide,

lungs and throat to lungs.

nitrogen oxides and fly ash. Petrochemical


Bad air quality and lot of






poisonous gases and

hydrochloric acid and organic halides.

particulate matter

c. Domestic sources: Domestic

suspended in the air

combustion of coal, wood or oil is a major

cause heart diseases and

source of smoke, dust, and sulphur dioxide


and nitrogen oxides.


It’s a state of lungs when

d. Smoking: The most direct and

tiny air sacs in them.

important source of air pollution that affects


Exposure to benzene

the health of many people is tobacco smoke.

vapours causes this

Even those who do not smoke may inhale

disease which is a type

the smoke produced by others (“passive

of blood cancer.


Liver and other

Suspended carcinogenic

e. Miscellaneous: The following

types of cancer

(cancer causing) matter

various sources also contribute to air

in the air is main cause

pollution. These comprise burning refuse,

of all types of cancer

incinerators, pesticide spraying, natural

related to respiratory

sources (e.g. windborne dust, fungi, moulds,








Another type of lung

programmes (Chiang et al., 2016; Huang _et _

cancer because of

al., 2016; Daneshparvar et al., 2016).

inhaling asbestos

Various air pollutants are as follows:

particles suspended in


*Carbon *



the air

monoxide is one of the most common and


Inhaling polluted air that

widely distributed air pollutants. It is a

al disorders

directly affects your

product of incomplete combustion of carbon

neuro system.

containing materials such as incomplete






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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al industrial process, heating facilities and

uptake of cadmium. Cigarettes may contain

incinerators. Estimates of man-made carbon

from 0.5 to 3 μg cadmium/gram of tobacco.

monoxide emission vary from 350 – 600

vii) Hydrogen sulphide: Hydrogen

million tonnes per annum.

sulphide is formed during coke production,

ii) Sulphur dioxide: Domestic fires,

in viscose rayon production, waste-water

power generation and motor vehicles can

treatment plants, wood pulp production

also produce emissions containing sulphur






dioxide. It is one of the several forms in

extraction process, oil refining and in the

which sulphur exists in the air. The others

tanning industry. Hydrogen sulphide is the

include H2S, H2SO4 and sulphate salts.

main toxic substance involved in livestock

Sulphur dioxide (SO2) is a colourless gas

rearing systems with liquid manure storage.

with a sharp odour, results from the

viii) Ozone: The highest levels of

combustion of sulphur containing fossil fuel,

ozone pollution occur during periods of

the smelting of sulphur-containing ores, and

sunny weather. It is formed by the

other industrial processes. When SO2

photochemical reaction of sunlight with

combines with water, it forms sulphuric

pollutants such as nitrogen oxides from

acid; this is the main component of acid rain

vehicle, industry emissions and volatile

which is a cause of deforestation. A SO2

organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by

concentration of 500μg/m3 should not be






exceeded over average periods of 10 min

previously recommended limit, which was


fixed at 120 μg/m3 of 8-hour mean, has been

iii) Lead: The combustion of alkyl

reduced to 100 μg/m3 based on recent

lead additives in motor fuels accounts for the





major part of all lead emissions into the

mortality and ozone levels occurring at

atmosphere. An estimated 80-90 % of lead

ozone concentrations below 120 μg/m3.

in ambient air is derived from the

ix) Oxides of nitrogen: Emission of

combustion of leaded petrol. The mining of

oxides of nitrogen occurs predominantly in

lead ores creates pollution problems.

the form of nitric oxide, which comprises

iv) Carbon dioxide: Enormous

around 95 % of nitrogen oxides from a

amount of it in combustion process using

combustion source. Coal is the most

coal, oil and gas its global concentration is

important fuel in this context; other sources

rising above the natural level by an amount

are road traffic and electricity generation.

that could increase global temperature

The current air quality guidelines of WHO

enough to affect climate markedly.

the value is 40 μg/m3 (WHO Air quality




guidelines for particulate matter, ozone,





nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide, 2006)

incineration, combustion of coal, wood,

(Kim et al., 2016; Liu et al., 2016; Singh _et _






al., 2016).

Hydrocarbons exert their pollutant action by

The detrimental health effects of air

taking part in the chemical reactions that

pollution have always attracted intense

cause photochemical smog.

interest among researchers from around the

vi) Cadmium: The steel industry,

world. In 2010, WHO estimated that more

waste incineration, volcanic action and zinc

than 6 million people die prematurely every

production seem to account for the largest

year because of air pollution (Brunekreef

emissions. Tobacco contains cadmium, and

and Holgate, 2002). Both ambient air

smoking may contribute significantly to the

pollution and indoor air pollution have been

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al linked to various adverse health outcomes,

cholerae O139; Rift Valley fever; hantavirus

especially in people with pre-existing

pulmonary syndrome; Lyme disease; and

medical conditions. Such controlled human

haemolytic uremic syndrome, a foodborne

exposure studies might also enable a better

infection caused by.certain strains of

understanding of the underlying mechanisms

[Escherichia coli _](Kamarulzaman _et al.,

leading to possible adverse outcomes.


Ambient air contains many pollutants,

Most emerging infections appear to

including gases such as ozone, oxides of

be caused by pathogens already present in

nitrogen, and Sulphur dioxide along with

the environment, brought out of obscurity or

particles of different sizes. Because of the

given a selective advantage by changing

complexity of the composition of air

conditions and afforded an opportunity to

pollutants and the difficulty of precisely

infect new host populations (on rare

measuring exposure, identifying the role of

occasions), a new variant may also evolve

different pollutants in respiratory morbidity

and cause a new disease. The process by

is no simple task. Among the various

which infectious agents may transfer from

pollutants, particulate matter with an

animals to humans or disseminate from

aerodynamic diameter of less than 2·5 μm

isolated groups into new populations can be

(PM2·5) have received a lot of attention

called “microbial traffic”. A number of

recently (Lim et. al., 2012). These small

human activity increase microbial traffic and

particles are able to penetrate deep into the

as a result promote the emergence and

small airways, alveoli, and blood stream,

epidemics. In some cases, including many of

where they can lead to subsequent

the most novel infections, the agents are

inflammation and vasoconstriction. WHO

zoonotic those transfer from their natural

has estimated that PM2·5 contributes to

hosts into the human population. In other

roughly 800000 premature deaths per year






globally (Shah et al., 2013). * *

geographically isolated populations are

  • *

given an opportunity to disseminate further.



*AND *

Surprisingly often, disease emergence is


caused by human actions; however, natural

causes, such as changes in climate, can also

Infectious diseases emerging throughout

at times be responsible. Although this

history have included some of the most

discussion is confined largely to human

feared plagues of the past. Several factors

diseases, similar considerations apply to

contribute to the emergence of infectious

emerging pathogens in other species.

diseases (Table 3). New infections continue

Ecological interactions can be complex, with

to emerge today, while many of the old

several factors often working together or in

plagues are with us still (Ameli, 2015) and





are considered as a global problem. As

movement from rural areas to cities can

demonstrated by influenza epidemics, under

spread a once-localized infection. The strain

suitable circumstances, a new infection first

on infrastructure in the overcrowded and

appearing anywhere in the world could

rapidly growing cities may disrupt or slow

traverse entire continents within days or

public health measures, perhaps allowing the

weeks. Examples of emerging diseases in

establishment of the newly introduced







infection. Finally, the city may also provide






a gateway for further dissemination of the

America and Africa; cholera due to _Vibrio _

infection. Most successful emerging

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[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al [Table 3: *]Factors in emergence of infectious diseases.


*Examples of specific factors *

*Examples of diseases *


Agriculture; dams, changes in water Schistosomiasis (dams); Rift Valley




/ fever (dams, irrigation); Argentine





drought; hemorrhagic



those due to famine; climate changes

Hantaan (Korean hemorrhagic fever)


(agriculture); hantavirus pulmonary


syndrome, southwestern US, 1993

and land use)

(weather anomalies)


Societal events: Population growth Introduction of HIV; spread of dengue;


and migration (movement from rural spread of HIV and other sexually


areas to cities); war or civil conflict; transmitted diseases.





intravenous drug use; use of High-

density facilities.


Worldwide movement of goods and ‘Airport’ malaria; dissemination of

travel and

people; air travel






hantaviruses; introduction of cholera

into South America;

Dissemination of O139 V. cholera.


Globalization of food supplies; Haemolytic uremic syndrome ( _E. coli _

and industry

changes in food processing and contamination of hamburger meat);




tissue bovine



causing spongiform encephalopathy;

immunosuppression; widespread use transfusion-associated


of antibiotics









Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease from

contaminated batches of human growth

hormone (medical technology)


Microbial evolution, response to Antibiotic-resistant bacteria; “antigenic

adaptation and

selection in environment

drift” in influenza virus


Breakdown in Curtailment



in Resurgence of tuberculosis in the

public health

prevention programs; inadequate United States; cholera in refugee


sanitation and

camps in Africa;

vector control measures

resurgence of diphtheria in the former

Soviet Union

*Adapted from Institute of Medicine (1992) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1994).

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 82

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al infections, including HIV, cholera, and

occurring radioactive materials found in soil,

dengue, have followed this route (Shima _et _

water and air are one of the reasons for the

al., 2016).

natural radiation. A naturally-occurring gas,

radon which emanates from rock and soil is


the main source of natural radiation. People

inhale and ingest radionuclides from air,

Ionizing radiation is a type of energy

food and water. People are also exposed to

released by atoms in the form of






electromagnetic waves or particles. People

particularly at high altitude (Little, 2003).

are exposed to natural sources of ionizing

Exposure to radiation from human-

radiation, such as in soil, water, and

made sources ranging from nuclear power

vegetation, as well as in human-made

generation to medical usage of radiation for

sources, such as x-rays and medical devices.

diagnosis or treatments is considered

Living beings are exposed to natural

hazardous to the human health. Today, the

radiation sources as well as human-made

most common human-made sources of

sources on a daily basis. Sixty naturally-

ionizing radiation are medical devices,

occurring radioactive materials found in soil,

including X-ray machines.

water and air are one of the reasons for the

natural radiation. A naturally-occurring gas,

*Effects on human health *

radon which emanates from rock and soil is

the main source of natural radiation. People

Acute health effects such as skin burns or

inhale and ingest radionuclides from air,

acute radiation syndrome can occur when

food and water. People are also exposed to

doses of radiation exceed certain levels. The






effect of cellular response of an organism’s

particularly at high altitude (Little, 2003).

to ionizing radiation exposure at various

Exposure to radiation from human-

time intervals is shown in Figure 3. Low

made sources ranging from nuclear power

doses of ionizing radiation can increase the

generation to medical usage of radiation for

risk of long term effects such as cancer.

diagnosis or treatments is considered

Pregnant women and children are especially

hazardous to the human health. Today, the

sensitive to radiation exposure. The cells in

most common human-made sources of






ionizing radiation are medical devices,

providing more opportunity for radiation to

including X-ray machines.

disrupt the process and cause cell damage.

  • *

Radiation damage to tissue and or organs


depends on the dose of radiation received, or

the absorbed dose which is expressed in a

Ionizing radiation is a type of energy

unit called the Gray (Gy). Beyond certain

released by atoms in the form of






electromagnetic waves or particles. People

functioning of tissues and or organs and can

are exposed to natural sources of ionizing

produce acute effects such as skin redness,

radiation, such as in soil, water, and

hair loss, radiation burns, or an acute

vegetation, as well as in human-made

radiation syndrome. These effects are more

sources, such as x-rays and medical devices.

severe at higher doses and higher dose rates.

Living beings are exposed to natural

If the radiation dose is low, but, over a long

radiation sources as well as human-made

period of time, there is still a risk of long-

sources on a daily basis. Sixty naturally-

term effects such as cancer; however, that

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 83

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al

  • *

[*Figure 3: *]Effect of ionizing radiation on cellular tissue damage. In seconds, it can break DNA

strands and cause oxidative damage to DNA, proteins, lipids, and other biomolecules; in

minutes, its exposure can alter the gene expression and modify some proteins. Long exposures

(days to years), results in acute organ failure leading to mortality or instability of gene that

causes cancer and birth defects and affects forthcoming generations.

may appear slowly over a long period of


time. This risk is higher for children and

adolescents, as they are significantly more

When the question arises, what does the

sensitive to radiation exposure than adults.

future hold for our planet’s natural

An organism’s response to ionizing

environment? Well, we have no crystal ball

radiation consists of a complex set of

to tell exactly what lies ahead, but we can

physical, chemical, and biological events.

look at past data and current trends to make

Within seconds, radiation produces damage

future forecasts. This chapter has linked

to DNA and oxidizes proteins and DNA,

environmental pollution to human health

lipids, and other biomolecules. Within

with a hope that individuals of the society

minutes, the cell responds by changing the

should be aware of future consequences of

activation of certain genes and modifying





some proteins. At high radiation doses, the






result may be acute organ failure leading to

understand the seriousness of environmental

death or genomic instability that causes

issues and to find the solution to break the

cancer and birth defects and affects future

development of pollution hazards.

generations (Fischbein et al., 1997; Aarkrog,

2003; Bréchignac, 2003; Alamri et al.,


ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 84

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Environment and Its Impact on Human Health Sridevi et al *ACKNOWLEDGEMENT *

gas-particle partitioning of PBDEs at

industrial, urban and suburban sites of

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giving an opportunity to share our views





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ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 88

*Focus on Environment *

_ _

_*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development* _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P89-94 _]

*Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios for Tracing *

*Food Web Connectivity *

Debashish Mazumder

[_Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), Locked Bag 2001, Kirrawee _]

_DC, NSW 2232, Australia _

[_ Phone No.: +61 2 9717 9219; Email: [email protected] _]


Stable isotope analysis has increasingly been used in water resource management. Water is a

vital resource crucial to sustain the natural ecosystems upon which we all rely. Understanding

the source and fate of energy and nutrient dynamics in aquatic ecosystems is fundamental for the

sustainable management of aquatic resources to ensure food supply for the increasing world

population. This article provides an example of how analysis of naturally occurring carbon and

nitrogen stable isotopes were used to model the estuarine food web and quantify energy and

nutrient flows from estuarine wetland habitats to fish, an important source of animal protein for

millions of people worldwide.

Keywords: Aquatic; food web; management; stable isotope

  • *


role in human nutrition and global food

supply (Tacon and Metian 2013). Fish, for

The United Nations predict that the world’s

example, currently represents the major

population will reach to 9.7 billion in 2050

source of animal protein for about 1.25

and 11.2 billion in 2100. This means the

billion people within 39 countries worldwide

competition for land, water and energy will

(Khan _et al., _ 2011), as well as a source of

increase many folds. Growing competition

livelihood for millions of people worldwide.

for natural resources would affect long term

The Food and Agricultural Organisation of

sustainability of agricultural production to

the United Nations reported that around 80%

ensure food security for the people (Charles

of the world fish stocks are either fully

_et al., _ 2010). Water resource is central to

exploited or overexploited. This signifies the

agriculture and rural development and

importance and urgency of effective

crucial in sustaining the natural ecosystems





upon which we all rely. Understanding the

conservation and sustainability of fish

source and fate of energy and nutrients in


aquatic ecosystems is fundamental for the

Every ecosystem is driven by





nutrients and energy, whether it is small or

resources. Aquatic foods play an important

big, whether wetlands, rivers or ocean.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 89

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios… Mazumder Understanding energy and nutrient dynamics

The isotopic value of a consumer

are fundamental for resource conservation

tissue is tightly linked with its food

for future generations. If we are able to

(Mazumder _et al., _ 2016), when an animal

determine the energetic links among animals

consumes a food the carbon and nitrogen

within a food web and their links with

isotope ratios from food are transferred to

primary resources, then we will be able to

the consumer tissues. There is an increase in

quantify the impact of disturbances (i.e.,

the relative proportion of carbon-13 content

anthropogenic and climate related) on

(13C/12C ratio) and nitrogen-15 content

species of our interest, or on a community

(15N/14N ratio) of the animal due to selective

level as well as the functionality of

metabolic loss of the lighter isotopes during

ecosystems which we are dependent on for

assimilation, excretion and growth. An

our survival. Food web inter-connections are

animal is typically enriched in heavier 13C

very complex and often influenced by the

and 15N relative to its diet by approximately

dynamics of physico-chemical processes,

1‰ (DeNiro & Epstein, 1978) 3 to 4‰

biodiversity, habitat type, spatial extent and

(Minagawa & Wada, 1984) respectively.

degree of disturbance. Integrating cutting

This process is called trophic fractionation

age isotopic techniques such as analysis of

or enrichment. Carbon isotope signatures are

naturally-occurring carbon and nitrogen

used to trace the sources of diet, whilst

stable isotope ratios (13C/12C and 15N/14N)

nitrogen isotope ratios reflect the relative

provide an important tool to model food

trophic position of organisms in the

chain connectivity within food webs.

ecosystem (Fry 2006, Post _et al., _ 2002).

Stable isotope (δ13C and δ15N) analyses


provide chemically validated data from


which mathematical models about food web

connectivity can be developed. When δ13C

Over the last decade, stable isotopes have

and δ15N signatures of organisms are plotted

been increasingly used in environmental

together on a carbon and nitrogen ‘bi-plot’

studies, and the stable isotopes of carbon

(δ13C – X axis and δ15N – Y axis) trophic

and nitrogen became a powerful way to trace

relationships can be visualized, whereby an

diet sources of aquatic animals (Peterson

organism’s position on the X axis indicates

and Fry 1987). Stable isotopes are different

their food source and Y axis indicates their

naturally occurring forms of elements. There

trophic level (Figure 1). Further to identify

are two stable atomic forms of carbon (13C

food web relationships between animals,

and 12C) and nitrogen (15N and 14N). Biota

source mixing calculation (i.e., IsoSource

assimilate both forms of C and N, and the

mixing model; Phillips and Gregg, 2003) is

ratio of 13C/12C (δ13C) and 15N/14N (δ15N)

also used to quantify the contribution of diet

compared to a reference standard can be

sources to consumer animal (Boecklen _et al., _

determined by an analysis of sample. In the


laboratory, very small amounts of samples

(microgram to milligram level) are oven


dried at 60oC for 48 hours then ground to a

fine powder. Powdered and homogenised

Estuaries are ecologically important places

tissue samples are loaded into tin capsules,

due to their high productivity and provision

and are analysed with a continuous flow

of a number of functional services. Estuaries

isotope ratio mass spectrometer (CF-IRMS)

are nursery habitats for many species of fish,

to obtain the isotopic ratios of the samples.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 90

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios… Mazumder techniques and analysed carbon and nitrogen

isotope values of primary producers and





mangrove and saltmarsh wetlands. Their

work also analysed isotopic values of a

range of fish species collected from estuary

and quantified food chain linkages (Figure


Research conducted in temperate

estuaries in Australia found that Grapsid

crabs living in saltmarsh and mangrove

habitats are keystone species in the estuarine

ecosystem. These crabs produce a huge

quantity of larvae during spring tides which

are exported to estuarine water through ebb

tides (Mazumder _et al., _ 2006; Mazumder _et _

_al., _ 2009; Platel and Freewater 2009).

Figure 1: Schematic diagram of food chain

Glassfish ( Ambassid jacksoniensis) is one of

connections between primary producers and

the abundant species in the estuary that

consumer species. Trophic fractionation

relies on crab larvae exported from the

factors are in bold.

saltmarsh through ebb tides (Mazumder _et _

_al., _ 2006; Hollingsworth and Connolly

prawn and crabs (Blaber, 2000; Nagelkerken

2006). Crabs living in the saltmarsh rely on

_et al. _, 2008). Some species spend the

autotrophic production, mostly C4 carbon

majority of their life in the estuary, some

and benthic organic materials for their diets

move regularly into estuaries, and others are

(Guest _et al., _ 2004; Saintilan and Mazumder

short-term visitors from the inshore marine

2010; Alderson _ et al. _, 2013). Crabs produce

waters. The abundance of animals in

larvae which are significant sources of

estuaries and their ecosystem services are

energy for estuarine glassfish. Subsequently,

linked to the primary productivity, the

the glassfish has significant food chain links

spatial coverage of various substrates and

with two top-order predatory fish species

the availability of wetland habitats such as

such as bream ( Acanthopagrus australis)





and mulloway ( Argyrosomus japonicas)

Mangroves and saltmarshes have long been

(Mazumder _et al., _ 2011). This is an example

linked with productive fisheries based on the

that illustrates the significance of trophic

regional-scale comparisons of fisheries

relay (Kneib 1997) between the estuarine

landings data (Meynecke _et al., _ 2008;

wetlands and commercially valuable fish

Saintilan _ et al., _ 2014). Understanding the

species in estuary. Food web models based

energy and nutrient pathways, trophic

on isotopic data (Figure 2) help identify

linkages between estuarine animals and

trophic linkages between species, the

wetland (seagrass, mangrove and saltmarsh)

importance of autotrophic carbon to benthic

carbon sources are important for the

macro-invertebrates (crabs) and energy and

conservation of food webs vital to ensure

nutrient flow from estuarine habitats to top-

healthy ecosystem services for human

order fish species in the food webs. Thus


conservation of commercially valuable fish

To quantify the trophic connectivity,

species in the estuary is related to the

Mazumder _et al. _, (2011) used stable isotope

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 91

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios… Mazumder Figure 2: Energy and nutrient flow model of an estuarine food web (Adopted from Mazumder _et _

_al., _ 2011).





Marine Ecology Progress Series *487, *

understanding these dynamics, ecosystem

[*113-122. *]

services of ecosystems cannot be protected

for human wellbeing.

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Fishes Ecology, Exploitation and










The author is thankful to Dr. Jagoda

Science, 372pp.

Crayford (ANSTO) for helping to draw

Figure 2 using Ecopath.

*Boecklen, W. J., Yarnes, C. T., Cook, B. *

[*A. and James, A. C. (2011). *] On the


Use of Stable Isotopes in Trophic

Ecology. _Annual Review of Ecology, _

*Alderson, B., Mazumder, D., Saintilan, *

[_Evolution, and Systematics _]42(1), 411-

*N., Zimmerman, K. and Mulry, P. *

*440. *

[*(2013). *] Application of isotope mixing

models to discriminate dietary sources

[*DeNiro, M. J. and Epstein, S. (1978). *]

over small-scale patches in saltmarsh.

Influence of diet on the distribution of





ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 92

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios… Mazumder Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta

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and crab larvae in a temperate

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ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 93

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios… Mazumder [*and Somerfield, P. J. (2008). *] The

*Saintilan, N., Wilson, N.C., Rogers, K., *

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*Rajkaran, A., and Krauss, K.W. *

Terrestrial and Marine Fauna: A

[*(2014). *] Mangrove expansion and salt

Review. Aquatic Botany [*89, 155-185. *]

marsh decline at mangrove poleward

limits. Global change biology [*20(1), *]

[*Peterson, B. J. and Fry, B. (1987). *] Stable

147-157. * *

Isotopes in Ecosystem Studies. _Annual _

[_Review of Ecology and Systematics _][*18, *]

[*SOFIA, (2009). *] The state of world fisheries

[*293-320. *]

and aquaculture 2008. FAO Fisheries

and Aquaculture Department. Food

[*Phillips, D. L. and Gregg, J. W. (2003). *]

and Agriculture Organization of the





United Nations, Rome.

isotopes: coping with too many

sources. [_Oecologia _]136(2), 261-9. * *

[*Tacon, A. G. J. and Metian, M. (2013). *] Fish

Matters: Importance of Aquatic Foods in

[*Platell, M. E. and Freewater, P. (2009). *]

Human Nutrition and Global Food

Importance of saltmarsh to fish species

Supply. Reviews in Fisheries Science

of a large south-eastern Australian

[*21(1), 22-38. *]

estuary during a spring tide cycle.

*United Nations Department of Economic *

Marine and Freshwater Research,

*and *

*Social *

*Affairs, *

*Population *

[*60(9), 936-941. *]

[*Division (2015). *]World Population

[*Post, D. M. (2002). *] Using stable isotopes to

Prospects[: *]The 2015 Revision[. *]New

estimate trophic position: models,

York: United Nations[*. *]

methods, and assumptions. Ecology *83 *

[*(3), 703–718. *]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 94

Focus on Environment

_ _

[_ Focus Environ (2016), P95-106 _]

_Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development _

*Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria and Crop Productivity *

  • *

*Umaiyal Munusamy *

[_Centre for Research in Biotechnology for Agriculture (CEBAR)[*, *]Level 3, Research Management _]

[_& Innovation Complex, [* ]University of Malaya, [ ]50603 Kuala Lumpur, [ *]Malaysia _]

Email: [email protected][* ] _ *_

  • *

  • *


Climate change drives yield reduction in most of the crops. Industrialized agricultural systems

are becoming unsustainable due to climate change. Research findings in the areas of plant mi-

crobe interactions suggest that the usage of plant growth promoting bacteria (PGPB) has the pos-

sibility to improve crop productivity in the coming years. Therefore, application of PGPB which

creates a step forward towards sustainable agricultural systems is recommended to replace the

dependence on chemical and synthetic fertilizers. This article presents an overview of PGPB and

their potential applications in enhancing agricultural crop productivity.

Keywords: Agriculture; bacteria; environment; plant growth regulators; sustainability

  • *


pant et al., 2005). Furthermore, in this cur-

rent climate changes industrialized farming

According to the United Nations and

strategies to enhance crop productivity are

the[* ]U.S. Census Bureau, [ *]the current world

becoming unsustainable. In addition, climate

population (total number of humans current-

change through higher temperatures, precipi-

ly living) is estimated to be at[* *]7.4 billion as

tation changes, increased weeds, pests and

of September 2016 and expected to reach 8

disease pressure has affected the agriculture

billion people in the spring of 2024 and 10

production in most of the countries. For in-

billion in the year 2056. The FAO (2016)

stance, the article reported by STAR (2016

highlighted that the food supply needs to be

A, B) and New Sunday Times (2016) (Fig-

increased by 70 percent to feed this popula-

ure 1) shows that vegetables are wilted and

tion. Even though, industrialized farming

the vegetable’s qualities are dropped due to

has become more intensive through artificial

the heat wave and these changes will have

fertilizers and chemical pesticides, it has re-

severe impacts on all the components of the

sulted into undesirable environmental im-

food security (Kang et al., 2009) if the glob-

pacts such as destruction of virgin forests,

al mean surface temperature is projected to

deterioration of water quality, overuse of

rise in a range from 1.8°C to 4.0°C by 2100

manure, in efficient monoculture strategies

(IPCC, 2007).

and finally increasing of greenhouse gas

Therefore, current research objec-

emissions (Abbamondi et al., 2016; Com-

tives are mainly focusing on a sustainable

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 95

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy agricultural production which will be effi-In another words it should be sustainable

cient in terms of natural resources need and

both environmentally and socially (Carvajal-

more consumer consciousness (Dawwam _et _

Munoz and Carmona-Garcia, 2012). One of

al., 2013).

the latest techniques that falls in the above

preference will be through the application of

*A *

*B *

plant growth promoting bacteria (PGPB)

(Lucy et al., 2004). It is mainly found in

soil, rhizosphere region and also associated

inside the plant cells (Gagne-Bourque et al.,

2015). In the soil, PGPB will be living

freely, while in the rhizosphere region it will

colonize the plant interior roots and allows

some bacteria to migrate towards the aerial

parts of the seedlings and promote the

growth of the plants (Figure 2A, B) (Com-

pant et al., 2005).

  • *

*C *

  • *

  • *

Figure 2: A) A schematic diagram showing

plant’s association with p

[*Figure 1(A, B & C): *]Media reports high-

lant growth pro-

lighting challenges in agriculture sector

moting bacteria (PGPB); B) types of PGPB. * *

(Star, 2016A, B; New Sunday Times, 2016).

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 96

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy The differences between PGPB and

soil is due to the various type of discharges

biofertilizers are commonly debateable as

such as amino acids, sugars and organic ac-

the biofertilizers also can promote plant

ids that are released from the plant roots

growth. However, biofertilizers require spe-

(Tak et al., 2013) and also due to different

cial care for long term storage because they

soil conditions (drought, flood, salinity and

are live cultures (Youssef and Eissa, 2014)

metal toxicity) (Inagaki et al., 2015). The

and it must be used before its expiry date. In

PGPB strains have different degree of capa-

addition, it should not be contaminated with

bility to attract to the root exudates (Ma _et _

other bacteria (Carvajal-Munoz and Carmo-

al., 2016). However, the non-PGPB or phy-

na-Garcia, 2012).

topathogens do not have this capability (Yu-

Biofertilizers are also unable to show

an, 2015).

promising results in the hot climates, unfa-

  • *

vourable soil pH conditions and in patho-


  • *

genic bacteria infected soils (Mishra, 2014).

Apart from the higher cost, the leaches of

Plant growth promoting bacteria belong to

the biofertilizer inoculants such as organic

diverse genera such as Acetobacter, Achro-

matter, phosphates and nitrates are also an-

_mobacter, _

_Anabaena, _

_Arthrobacter, _

other problem that need to be managed (Ab-

Azoarcos, Azospirillum, Azotobacter, Bacil-

bamondi et al., 2016). The leached nitrates

lus, Frankia, Hydrogenophaga, Microcole-

and phosphates that enter the water systems

us, Phyllobacterium and Pseudomonas.

will lead to eutrophication in the water res-

They are endophytes that are non-pathogenic

ervoirs and cause death of many aquatic or-

to plants (Gagne-Bourque et al., 2016). They

ganisms (Brar et al., 2012). In addition, the

are also classified based on the plant species

organic material derived from the bioferti-

(Compant et al., 2005), plant organs and tis-

lizers will increase the carbon content in the

sues such as from phyllosphere (Gagne-

soil and hence will contribute to the green-

Bourque et al., 2016), anthosphere (Berg _et _

house gasses (Saeed et al., 2015). Since food

al., 2014) or spermosphere (Sivasakthivelan

production needs to be increased without

and Stella, 2012). The presence of PGPB in

negative impacts to the environment, PGPB

the soils are also depends on the types of soil

are the obvious choice to be utilized (Lucy

such as dry, cold, muddy and also deter-

et al., 2004).

mined by the types of climate region such as

tropical, dry, mild Mediterranean, continen-




tal and polar climates (Souza et al., 2015;


Nihorimbere et al., 2011).

As depicted in figure 2, it is the free living


bacteria that present in the soil (Compant _et _

  • *

al., 2005). Bacteria that are located around

*Facilitating resources *

the roots are known as rhizobacteria. While,

bacteria that are able to colonize the internal

Endophytic bacteria exchange nutritions,

tissues of plant organs escape the competi-

enzymes (lipase, catalase and oxidase), func-

tion from rhizosphere microorganisms are

tional agents (siderophores, biosurfactants)

called as endophyte (Figure 2A, B) (Gagne-

and signals (Abbamondi et al., 2016) effi-

Bourque et al., 2016). The reason for the

ciently. The PGPB are known to promote

presence of various kinds of bacteria in the

root development by increasing the water

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 97

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy absorption in plant root cells (Vacheron _et _

content for all living things especially for

al., 2013). They can also produce phytohor-

plant. Fixing atmosphere nitrogen (N2) and

mones such as indole acetic acid (IAA), gib-

stimulation of nitrate transport system by

berellic acid (GA) and cytokinins (Gupta _et _

PGPB increases the nitrogen availability for

al., 2015). Different PGPB produce different

the plants (Mantelin and Touraine, 2004).

phytohormones (Pontes et al., 2015). In ad-

Besides plant growth, nitrogen is required

dition, it is also capable of inducing modifi-

for synthesis of enzyme, proteins, chloro-

cations in plant gene expression, increasing

phyll, DNA and RNA (Saeed et al., 2015).

drought resistance associated genes like

ERD15 (early response to dehydration) or

*Sequestration of Iron *

DREB (dehydration responsive element pro-

tein) (Gagne-Bourque et al., 2015). Inocula-

Iron mainly affects the variety of bacterial

tion of PGPB will increase the uptake of

communities in the soil as they compete

NH +



4 , HPO4 /H2PO4 by the roots, mineral-

among themselves to absorb the available

ize organic soil and induce tolerance or re-

iron (Woitke and Schnitzler, 2005). There-

sistance to the biotic stress (Nkebiwe et al.,

fore, PGPB synthesize low molecular mass

2016). Most PGPB can also facilitate the

known as siderophore under iron limiting

uptake of environmental nutrients such as

conditions. This molecule will competitively

sulphur, magnesium and calcium. It has

bind to ferric ion Fe+3 to form Fe-

shown to solubilise and mineralize organic

siderophore complex that facilitate better

soil (Calvo et al., 2014) these will induce

iron uptake (Gupta et al., 2014). Various

biochemical changes in the plant which will

bacterial strains will synthesize different

lead to beneficial effects on the plant health,

types of siderophores that function different-

growth and also in decreasing plant disease

ly (Ahmed and Holmstrom, 2014). They al-

(Tak et al., 2013).

so generally remove any kind of sidero-

phores with lower affinity and draw irons

*Phosphate solubilisation *

from heterologous siderophores that are

coproduced by other microorganisms. All

Phosphorus is a major macronutrient needed

these will increase the uptake of iron in

by plants; however, it is present in unavaila-

plants (Compant et al., 2005).

ble form in the soil (Yuan, 2015). In addi-

tion, the rainfall and leaching will continu-


ously reduce the phosphorus level in the soil


(Brar et al., 2012). The presences of PGPB

  • *

will enable the conversion of phosphorus

*Modulation of ethylene *

into more available forms, such as ortho-

phosphates which plant roots can absorb

Methionine is the initial substrate involve in

easily (Rodriguez et al., 2006).

the ethylene production. This substrate is

converted into S-adenosyl-L-methionine

Nitrogen fixation

(SAM) by SAM synthase. It is then hydro-

lyzed to 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic

According to the Fertilizers Institute of

acid (ACC) and 5- methyl thioadenosine by

United States (2016), there is 78% of nitro-

ACC synthase (Gamalero and Glick, 2015).

gen in the air and 98% presence in the soil.

Finally, ACC molecule is metabolized to

Therefore, there is no limitation in nitrogen

ethylene, carbon dioxide and cyanide by

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 98

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy ACC oxidase. However, the high formation

tion of IAA will alter the IAA concentration

of ethylene can be harmful to the plants;

to either promotion or inhibition of plant

therefore, its level needs to be regulated

growth (Glick, 2014).

(Shagol and Sa, 2012). In that, ethylene

formation is regulated by ACC deaminase in

*Production of cytokinins and gibberellins *

the PGPB cell by extracting ACC oxidase

and synthase from the plant cell into PGPB

PGPB are capable to produce cytokinins and

cell (Marasco et al., 2013). This reaction

gibberellins in the cell-free medium and

produces ammonia and α-ketobutyrate that





lowers the plant ethylene levels (Toklikish-

(Vacheron et al., 2013). Cytokinins are es-

vili et al., 2010).

sential for plant cell division, seed germina-

tion, branching, root growth, accumulation

[*Production of Indole Acetic Acid *]([*IAA) *]

of chlorophyll, leaf expansion and delay of

senescence (Gamalero and Glick, 2015).

Plants produce IAA from independent bio-

Whereas, gibberellins are involved in cell

synthetic pathway of tryptophan while

division and elongation, plant developmental

PGPB produce IAA by using tryptophan re-

processes such as seed germination, stem

leased by the plant roots (Tak et al., 2013).

elongation, flowering, fruiting and delay of

According to Mohite (2013), IAA have vari-

senescence, promotion of root growth since

ous functions in plants such as plant cell di-

they regulate root hair abundance (Cole-

vision, extension and differentiation, in-

brook et al., 2014).

creases the rate of xylem and root develop-

ment, initiates lateral and adventitious root


formation, while according to Shahab et al.

  • *

(2013), IAA stimulates seed and tuber ger-

*Biocontrol *

mination, controls process of vegetative,

mediates responses to light, gravity and flo-

The damage caused by the fungal (Ahmad _et _

rescence, affects the photosynthesis level,

al., 2008), bacterial (Vidaver and Lam-

pigment formation, biosynthesis of various

brecht, 2004), viral (Gergerich and Dolja,

metabolites and resistance towards stressful

2006), insects (USDA, 2015) and nematodes

conditions. Different plant species (Ljung _et _

(Youssef and Eissa, 2014) need to be con-

al., 2013), different plant organs such as

trolled efficiently. The usage of PGPB as a

roots and shoots (Liu et al., 2012) and dif-

biocontrol was initiated due to consumer

ferent tissues (Petersson et al., 2009) re-

demands on pesticides free crops, to reduce

spond differently towards the effects of IAA.

environmental impacts and the increasing

Furthermore, plants always respond based

cost of agrochemicals (Agarwal et al.,

on the total concentration of IAA inside the

2011). The ability of PGPB to produce many

plant cells as IAA is being produced by

types of antagonistic antibiotics prevents the

plant through various channel such as

proliferation of plant pathogens (Ahmad _et _

through independent pathway, through for-

al., 2008). According to Gupta et al. (2015),

mation of other indolic compounds (both



endogenous and synthetic) which represents

(DAPG), oomycin A, phenazine, pyoluteor-

auxin-like activities (Ljung, 2013) and also

in, pyrrolnitrin, tensin, tropolone, cyclic

through PGPB secretion (El-Azeem et al.,

lipopeptides, cylic oligomycin A, kanosa-

2007). Therefore, the combined concentra-

mine, zwittermicin A, and xanthobaccin are

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 99

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy some identified antibiotics produced by

Biopriming plants with PGPB will trigger

PGPB. These antibiotics are formed through

the induced systemic resistance (ISR)

metabolic pathways in the bacterial cell

through flagellation, siderophore, lipopoly-

through usage of available nutrients, biotic

sacharides and volatile organic compounds

and environmental stimuli such as minerals,

formation (Compant et al., 2005). This type

carbon source, pH, temperature and trace

of resistance is mainly demonstrated by rhi-

elements (Compant et al., 2005). However,

zobacteria and endophytes, and they will not

some pathogens will develop resistance to

cause any visible symptoms of disease.

these antibiotics. Therefore, usage of multi-

However, defence mechanism which is a

ple bacteria that produce multiple antibiotics

type of resistant mechanism triggered by

which acts synergistically will show better

PGPB will regulate different sets of genes

effects (Glick, 2012). In addition, formation

such as peroxides, phenylalanine, ammonia

of allelochemicals by PGPB has the poten-

lyase, phytoalexins, polyphenol oxidase and

tial to suppress pathogens activities (Saraf _et _

chalcone synthase (Choudhary and Johri,

al., 2014). Besides that, the capability of

2009). Through this mechanism, accumula-

PGPB in producing chitinase, cellulase, β-

tion of salicylic acid, jasmonate and ethylene

1,3 glucanase, protease and lipases will

will increase the strength of plant cell wall

breakdown the cell walls of pathogenic bac-

and alters host physiology and metabolic

teria and fungus (Hamid et al., 2013, El-

responses leading to an enhanced synthesis

Katatny, 2010). In addition, the formation of

of plant defence against abiotic stress (Com-

siderophores will prevent some pathogenic

pant et al., 2005). Besides that, since water

bacteria from acquiring iron nutrient directly

is one of the most limiting factors for plant

from the soil. This somehow will affect

development in semi arid climates, xerotol-





erant microorganisms can be used to in-

growth (Gupta et al., 2014). On the other

crease growth of plants in such climatic

hand, application of PGPB will increase the

condition (Petrovic et al., 2000). It is be-

content of beneficial bacteria in the soil.

cause microorganisms that can survive under

Abundant of beneficial bacteria will rapidly

drought conditions have several mechanisms

colonize plant roots before pathogenic bacte-

such as the production of exopolysacharides,

ria could actually invade into the plant root

biofilm formation and osmolytes production

system (Kundan et al., 2015; Glick, 2012).

that help to avoid cell water loss and boost

Furthermore, PGPB are also capable to de-

the plant growth (Kavamura et al., 2013). In

toxify pathogen virulence factor by produc-

addition, PGPB can offer plant protection

ing proteins that reversibly bind to the toxins

against desiccation through the maintenance

(Gaiero et al., 2013). Recently, it was re-

of moist environment and by supplying nu-

ported that PGPB suppress the virulence

trients and hormones which act as a plant

genes by quenching pathogen quarom sens-

growth promoter for root development

ing capacity by degrading autoinducer sig-

(Vacheron et al., 2013).

nals (Compant et al., 2005). Therefore,

PGPB can be used as a biocontrol agent to

*Environmental sustainability *

defeat the pathogens.

Application of PGPB will naturally enhance

*Induced systemic resistance in plants *

soil fertility (Roychowdhury et al., 2014).

Increase of PGPB concentration in the soil

will enhance the degradation of resources

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 100

[_Focus Environ (2016) _]

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria Munusamy efficiently and will lead to reduction of

*Gkoreziz, P., Iodice, C., de Melo *

leaches into water system (Reed and Glick,

*Rangel, W., Nicolaus, B. and *

2004). Therefore, usage of PGPB can be

*Vangronsveld, *

*J. *

[*(2016). *]


helpful in creating environmental sustaina-

growth-promoting effects of rhi-

bility. Plant microbe interactions apparently

zopheric and endophytic bacteria asso-

offer a favourable environment for co-

ciated with different tomato cultivars

metabolism of soil-bound bacteria with re-

and new tomato hybrids. _Chemical _

calcitrant chemicals (Ambrosini et al.,

and Biological Technologies in Agri-

2016). The microbial transformation of toxic

culture [*3, 1-10. *]

compounds into non-toxic material is medi-

ated by the energy provided by the root exu-

*Agarwal Pavan, K., Shruti, A., Satish *

dates (Agarwal Pavan et al., 2011). In addi-

*Kumar, V., Santosh Kumar, S. and *

tion, PGPB are also known to produce bio-

*Keshav Prashad, S. * [*(2011). *] Charac-

surfactants that contributes in the removal of

terization of plant growth promoting

toxic contaminants in the soil (Bashan et al.,

bacteria from soil of central and upper


Himalayan region. International Jour-

nal of Applied Biology and Pharma-


ceutical Technology [*2, 363-369. *]

Soil microorganisms (PGPB) play an im-

*Ahmad, F., Ahmad I. and Khan M.S. *

portant role in maintaining soil structure,

[*(2008). *]Screening of free-living rhi-

fertility and the growth of plants. They are

zopheric bacteria for their multiple

able to influence these effects due to their

plant growth promoting activities. Mi-

close association with the plants. Studies

crobiological Research [*163, 173-181. *]

regarding the root-microbe interactions that

are affected by the genetic and environmen-

[*Ahmed, E. and Holmstrom, S.J.M. (2014). *]

tal control along with the spatial and tem-

Siderophores in environmental re-

poral aspects needs to be studied in detail.

search: roles and applications. Micro-

Field application is very important for the

bial Biotechnology [*7, 196-208. *]

successful implementation of PGPB. The

*Ambrosini, A., de Souza, R. and Passaglia *

importance of PGPB is slowly being recog-

*L.M.P. * [*(2016). *] Ecological role of bac-

nized by farmers in all regions and they are

terial inoculants and their potential

slowly shifting towards replacing conven-

impact on soil microbial diversity.

tional agricultural methods with sustainable

Plant Soil [*400, 193-207. *]

agricultural techniques.

*Bashan, Y., Esther Puente M., de Bashan, *


*L.E. and Hernandez, J.P. * [*(2008). *]

Environmental uses of plant growth

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*G.R., *

*Tommonaro, *

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[*Smalla, K. (2014). *] Unravelling the

*Weyens, N., Thijs, S., Sillen, W., *

plant microbiome: Looking back and

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  • *

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*Focus on Environment *

Focus Environ (2016), P107-115

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

[*World Soil Day: A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Global *]

*Sustainable Development *

  • *

*Subhash Janardhan Bhore *

Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, AIMST University, Bedong-Semeling

Road, 08100 Bedong, Kedah, Malaysia

Phone No.: +60-4-429-8176; Email: [email protected] / [email protected]

  • *


  • *

Food that we eat provides the nutrients to nourish our body. The world population is growing

rapidly and providing enough food to meet the increasing demand will be a huge challenge. The

United Nations most recent estimate indicates that the world population will be about 8.5 billion in

2030 and we need to double the agricultural productivity by that time to meet the expected de-

mand. The whole agricultural productivity and our food security are mainly dependent on the

health of soil. In fact, soil is the basis in providing our nutrients, water, climate, biodiversity and

life. However, soils have been neglected at large. The damage caused by deforestation, extensive

usage of synthetic fertilizers, mining, soil erosion, and rapidly growing urbanization are the major

concerns. Because, all these soil destructing activities are not climate-neutral. Every year, the

international community is observing December 5 as ‘World Soil Day’ to connect people with

soils and raise awareness on soils critical importance in our lives. The purpose of this article is to

highlight the importance of soil conservation, and a need to take up its preservation and restoration

actions. Bearing in mind the sustainable development goals (SDGs), the role of soils health in

enhancing agricultural productivity in a sustainable manner and its importance in global sustain-

able development is also highlighted.

[*Keywords: *]Agriculture; biotechnology; deforestation; environment; poverty; sustainable development goals (SDGs); synthetic fertilizers; world soil day

  • * _]


soil in our lives and significance of sustainable

soil management.

The 68th general assembly of the United Na-

The themes for World Soil 2014 and 2015

tions (UN), held in December 2013 had de-

were “Soils, foundation for family farming”

clared unanimously that December 5 will be

and “Soils, a solid ground for life”, respec-

observed as the World Soil Day (WSD). Every

tively. This year (2016), the WSD theme was

year, the WSD is observed on December 5th to

─ “soils and pulses, a symbiosis for life”. The

promote the awareness about importance of

purpose was to highlight the importance of

cultivating pulses to enhance the soil fertility.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 107

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore Pulses [plant species from family: Fabaceae

end all forms of hunger and malnutrition by

(this family is also known as Leguminosae)]

2030 and it is clearly reflected in the seven-

are known to fix the nitrogen from atmosphere

teen-SDGs (Table 1) ambitiously adopted by

and that helps in improvement of soils fertility,

the international community (SDGs, 2016).

structure and microbial biodiversity (Wahbi el

The total agricultural production including

al., 2016; Luo el al., 2016; UN, 2016). This

milk, meat and fishes from aquaculture is

article highlights the various issues associated

completely relied on soil health; hence, con-

with soils degradation, loss and conservation

servation of soil is of prime importance to

as well as the role of heathy soils in sustainable

accomplish SDG 1 (end poverty in all its forms

development for people and planet in context

everywhere) and SDG 2 (end hunger, achieve

with the sustainable development goals (SDGs)

food security and improved nutrition and

adopted by the UN.

promote sustainable agriculture). Directly or

indirectly, the efficacy of sustainable soil


management will complement the efforts of

accomplishing other SDGs (Table 1).

The nutrients derived from our daily diet are

essential for our body’s growth, development,


repairs, and to lead an active, healthy life. In

[*SOILS? *]

fact, soil is the basis for the production of all

  • *

types of food in agriculture and aquaculture

Deforestation, extensive usage of synthetic

industry. Therefore, sustainable agricultural

fertilizers, mining, soil erosion, and rapidly

productivity is very important in order to feed

growing urbanization are some of the major

the global population. The UN estimates sug-

causes responsible for soil degradation and or

gest that rapid economic growth and increased


agricultural productivity in last 20 years

Through our daily diet, we are taking

helped to make huge progress globally in

carbohydrates, proteins, minerals, fats, vita-

eradicating extreme hunger; but, extreme

mins and trace elements to nourish our body.

hunger as well as malnutrition remains a huge

All food items that we eat are linked with soils.

challenge (UNDP, 2016) in several countries

For instance, in agriculture, crop plants take

in general, and in developing and least devel-

their nutrients from the soil, while fishes or

oped countries in particular. The UN estimates

other aquatic animal we eat are dependent on

also clearly indicates that about 795 million

phytoplanktons, zooplankton, seaweed, and or

people are chronically undernourished because

nutrients from specially designed fish food

of poor agricultural productivity mainly due to

formulation (Alemzadeh et al., 2014; Ghara-

a direct consequence of environmental degra-

jehdaghipour et al., 2016; Bentzon‐Tilia et al.,

dation, drought and loss of biodiversity

2016; Hehre and Meeuwig, 2016). Directly or

(UNDP, 2016; Hunter el al., 2016).

indirectly, all the nutrients required for hu-

mans are originated from soil (Figure 1).


Hence, sustainable soil management is of

*SDGs *

prime importance for a sustainable global food

supply as well as for global food security.

For the international community, one of the

challenge is ─ how we can make sure that all

*Destruction of soils by deforestation *

people on the planet will have enough food in a

  • *

sustainable manner? The UN are determined to

About 13 Million hectares of forest are cleared[* *]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 108

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore Table 1: Sustainable development goals

manage forests, combat desertification,

adopted by United Nations (SDGs, 2016).

and halt and reverse land degradation and

*No Sustainable Development Goals *

halt biodiversity loss.

1. * *

End poverty in all its forms everywhere.

16. [* *]Promote peaceful and inclusive societies

2. * *

End hunger, achieve food security and

for sustainable development, provide ac-

improved nutrition and promote sustaina-

cess to justice for all and build effective,

ble agriculture.

accountable and inclusive institutions at

3. * *

Ensure healthy lives and promote

all levels.

well-being for all at all ages.

17. [* *]Strengthen the means of implementation

4. * *

Ensure inclusive and equitable quality

and revitalize the global partnership for

education and promote lifelong learning

sustainable development.

opportunities for all.

5. * *

Achieve gender equality and empower all

every year for mining, inappropriate farming

women and girls.

techniques, and for the construction of cities,

6. * *

Ensure availability and sustainable man-

roads (Chemnitz and Weigelt, 2015). As a

result, we lose fertile soils forever at the ex-

agement of water and sanitation for all.

pense of forests, pastureland and its environ-

7. * *

Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sus-

mental benefits. By supporting forests, soil

tainable and modern energy for all.

plays very important roles in biodiversity

8. * *

Promote sustained, inclusive and sus-

conservation, carbon storage and climate reg-

tainable economic growth, full and pro-

ulation (Bonan, 2008; Cohn et al., 2014).

ductive employment and decent work for

*Destruction of soils by mining *


9. * *

Build resilient infrastructure, promote

Arable land and fertile soils are also destructed

inclusive and sustainable industrialization

by mining activities for coal, metals and min-

and foster innovation.

eral extraction. Globally, less than 1% of the

10. [* *]Reduce inequality within and among

land is used for mineral extraction; however,

its impact is huge and in the process we lose


millions of tons’ fertile soils. Mining is also

11. [* *]Make cities and human settlements inclu-

causing huge amount of adverse effect on the

sive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

local, regional and global environment

12. [* *]Ensure sustainable consumption and

(Chemnitz and Weigelt, 2015; Maier et al.,

production patterns.


13. [* *]Take urgent action to combat climate

*Destruction of soils by urbanization *

change and its impacts.

  • *

14. [* *]Conserve and sustainably use the oceans,

In general, people from rural areas migrate to

seas and marine resources for sustainable

cities for the employment purpose. In 2014,


54% of the world’s population was residing in

15. [* *]Protect, restore and promote sustainable

use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably

urban areas (UN, 2014). The rapidly growing

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 109

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore Figure 1: A schematic diagram showing flow of nutrients depicting the importance of soils.

urbanization in the world is also responsible





for the soils destruction as the several devel-

(UNEP, 2014). Hence, we should avoid the

opmental projects destroy the arable and fertile

usage of synthetic fertilizers to protect the soil

soils. For instance, usage of paddy fields for

fertility. In addition, the production and mar-

the housing projects. It is estimated that

keting of synthetic fertilizers (nitrogen, phos-

growing urbanization is causing the loss of 2

phorus and potassium (NPK)) utilize huge

hectares of soil per minute (Huang et al., 2015;

amount of natural resources (Chemnitz and

Chemnitz and Weigelt, 2015; Takano, 2007).

Weigelt, 2015).



In agriculture of most of the countries, syn-

For sustainable soil management and agricul-

thetic fertilizers are used widely. The extensive

tural sustainability, we need to promote

usage of inorganic fertilizers is definitely

eco-friendly practices to enhance the soil fer-

helping to enhance the agricultural productiv-

tility and agricultural productivity (Panel 1).

ity. However, for long term, if we completely

We also need to find out innovative ways of

depend on synthetic fertilizers then it is im-

using eco-friendly agricultural practices. In-

possible to attain agricultural sustainability

novative use of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi

and to end global hunger (Chemnitz and

(AMF) (Robinson et al., 2016; Asmelash et al.,

Weigelt, 2015). Use of synthetic fertilizers is

2016), plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria

not an environment friendly practice as it

(PGPR) (Bharti et al., 2016; Kuan et al., 2016),

damages the soil fertility and causes the

and endophytes (fungal and bacterial)

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 110

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore

  • *

Panel 1: Eco-friendly agricultural practices for sustainable soil management and for agricultural

and environmental sustainability. AMF, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi; and PGPR, plant

growth-promoting rhizobacteria.

(Molina-Montenegro et al., 2016; Pandey et

enough food to meet the demand of growing

al., 2016; Tétard‐Jones and Edwards, 2016) in

population. It will also boost our chances of

agriculture does have tremendous potential to

accomplishing two goals, “ending poverty in

promote the growth, development and

all its forms everywhere” (SDG 1) and “ending

productivity of agricultural crops. In fact,

hunger, achieving food security and improved

eco-friendly agricultural practices will not

nutrition and promotion of sustainable agri-

only help in boosting sustainable soil man-

culture” (SDG 2). Furthermore, healthy soil

agement and food security but also benefit

and sustainable agriculture will complement

several other sectors including water supply

directly or indirectly the efforts required in

system, socio-economic, social health etc.

achieving rest of the SDGs (Table 1). There-

(Panel 2).

fore, we must protect soil and make sure that it

is in healthy condition as sustainable devel-


opment of the people and the planet is de-

pendent on it (Figure 2).

As a whole, if we do sustainable soil man-

Bearing in mind the important facts about

agement effectively then we should be able to

soil (Table 2) (UN, 2016); we need to under-

keep soil in its healthy condition. As a result,

stand that our survival on this planet is not

healthy soil will serve as a gear to promote

possible if we do not manage soil and its health

agricultural sustainability. In response, sus-

in a sustainable manner. Hence, we need to

tainable agriculture will be able to produce

promote the awareness about sustainable soil

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 111

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore Panel 2: Benefits of eco-friendly agriculture are beyond conservation of soil and its sustainable


[*Figure 2: *]The role of soil in achieving agricultural sustainability and sustainable development for

the people and the planet.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 112

Focus Environ (2016)

A Brief Overview of Soils Role in Sustainability Bhore Table 2: Facts about soils depicts the im-

  • *

portance of sustainable soil management for


the sustainable development (UN, 2016).


*Fact *

To sum up, we have to make sure that we are


About 95% of our food comes from

managing soil and its health in a sustainable


manner for a sustainable agricultural produc-


Soils are the foundation for family

tivity. Healthy soil is essential to “end hunger,

farming, where food supply chain be-

achieve food security and improved nutrition


and promote sustainable agriculture” (SDG 2)


Globally, up to 50,000 sq. km of soil,

and to “end poverty in all its forms everywhere”

an area around the size of Costa Rica is

(SDG 1). Sustainable soil management is also

lost every year.

vital for the inclusive sustainability as all the


33% of our global soils are degraded.

SDGs are interdependent. Therefore, we need


16% of the Africa continent has been

to promote sustainable soil management effi-

affected by soil degradation.

ciently at local, regional and global level.


11 hectare of soils are sealed under

We need to bear in mind that without

expanding cities every hour in Europe.

protecting the soil, we will not be able ― to


Soil is teeming with life – soils host a

feed rapidly growing world population; to

quarter of our planets biodiversity.

achieve a goal of keeping global warming be-


There are more organisms in one ta-

low 2°C, a pledge made through Paris

blespoon of healthy soil than there are

Agreement on Climate Change (PACC); and

people on earth.

to halt the loss of biodiversity.


Healthy soil is the key to food security

Unquestionably, soil is not only a core

and nutrition for all.

component of the natural system but also a

vital contributor to human wellbeing. Never-


It can take up to 1000 years to produce

theless, will power of policy makers, active

just 2-3 cm of soil.

participation and timely input from all stake-


Our soils are in great danger.

holders, and efficacy of soil conservation at


Estimates suggest that we only have 60

local, regional and global level will determine

years of topsoil left.

the overall success of sustainable soil man-


Sustainable soil management could

agement and its contribution in accomplishing

produce up to 58% more food.

SDGs for the people and the planet.

management and its importance among com-


munities not only to commemorate the ‘World

Soil Day’ but also in everyday life, till the

The author declares no conflict of interest.

sustainability goal is achieved. All public and

private institutions, universities, and depart-


ments those are associated with agriculture and

  • *

sustainable development also need to promote

[*Alemzadeh, E., Haddad, R., Ahmadi, A.-R. *]

awareness about the importance of sustainable

soil management by highlighting the role of

(2014). Phytoplanktons and DNA bar-

healthy soil for our wellbeing, and local, re-

coding: Characterization and molecular

gional and global sustainable development.

analysis of phytoplanktons on the Per-

  • *

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ology 6(4), 296–302.

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Asmelash, F., Bekele, T., Birhane, E. (2016).

The Potential Role of Arbuscular My-

*Gharajehdaghipour, T., Roth, J.D., Fafard, *

corrhizal Fungi in the Restoration of De-

P. M., Markham, J.H. (2016). Arctic

graded Lands. Frontiers in Microbiology[* *]

foxes as ecosystem engineers: increased

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productivity on fox dens. Scientific Re-

Bentzon‐[*Tilia, M., Sonnenschein, E.C., *]

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managing microbes in aquaculture –

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Towards a sustainable industry. Micro-

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between Farmed Seaweed Production

and Herbivorous Fish Catch. PLoS ONE

Bharti, N., Pandey, S.S., Barnawal, D., Pa-

11(2), e0148250.

tel, V.K., Kalra, A. (2016). Plant

growth promoting rhizobacteria Dietzia

*Huang, J., Zhang, W., Mo, J., Wang, S., *

natronolimnaea modulates the expres-

Liu, J., Chen, H. (2015). Urbanization in

sion of stress responsive genes provid-

China drives soil acidification of Pinus

ing protection of wheat from salinity

massoniana forests. Scientific Reports *5, *


stress. Scientific Reports 6, 34768.

Bonan G. (2008). Forests and Climate

[*Hunter, D., Özkan, I., Moura de Oliveira *]

Change: Forcings, Feedbacks, and the

*Beltrame, D., Samarasinghe, W. L. G., *

Climate Benefits of Forests. Science

[*Wasike, V. W., Charrondière, U. R., *]


… Sokolow, J. (2016). Enabled or Dis-

abled: Is the Environment Right for Us-

Chemnitz, C. and Weigelt, J. (Eds). (2015).

Soil Atlas 2015: Facts and figures about

ing Biodiversity to Improve Nutrition? * *

earth, land and fields. Heinrich Böll

Frontiers in Nutrition 3, 14.

Foundation, Berlin, Germany, and the In-

stitute for Advanced Sustainability Stud-

*Kuan, K.B., Othman, R., Abdul Rahim, K., *

ies, Potsdam, Germany. Available online:

Shamsuddin, Z. H. (2016). Plant



Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria Inocu-

on 14 November 2016).

lation to Enhance Vegetative Growth,

Nitrogen Fixation and Nitrogen Remobi-

[*Cohn, A.S., Mosnier, A., Havlík, P., Valin, *]

lisation of Maize under Greenhouse Con-

H., Herrero, M., Schmid, E., … Ober-

ditions. PLoS ONE 11(3), e0152478.

steiner, M. (2014). Cattle ranching in-

tensification in Brazil can reduce global

*Luo, X., Fu, X., Yang, Y., Cai, P., Peng, S., *

greenhouse gas emissions by sparing land

Chen, W., and Huang, Q. (2016). [* *]Mi-

from deforestation. Proceedings of the

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roles in modulating paddy soil fertility.


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Scientific Reports 6, 20326.

TétardJones, C., Edwards, R. (2016). Po-

tential roles for microbial endophytes in

[*Maier, R.M., Díaz-Barriga, F., Field, J.A., *]

herbicide tolerance in plants. Pest Man-

*Hopkins, J., Klein, B., Poulton, M.M. *

agement Science[* 72(2), 203–209*].

(2014). Socially Responsible Mining: the

Relationship between Mining and Pov-

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erty, Human Health and the Environment.

Economic and Social Affairs, Population

Reviews on Environmental Health 29, 83–

Division (2014). World Urbanization


Prospects: The 2014 Revision, Highlights


[*Molina-Montenegro, *]

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*Oses, *

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[*Ruiz-Lara, *]

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UN, United Nations. (2016). [* ]World Soil Day[. *]

Root-endophytes improve the ecophysio-


online:[* *]

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tion. AoB Plants 8, plw062.

UNEP, (2014). UNEP Year Book 2014:

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Emerging issues in our global environ-

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A.K., Kalra, A. (2016). Fungal endo-



phytes of Catharanthus roseus enhance

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gramme. (2016). Sustainable Devel-

tific Reports 6, 26583.





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*du, K., Harrison, R. J., Jeffries, P., Xu, *


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Plant Science 7, 1237.

*Wahbi, S., Prin, Y., Thioulouse, J., Sanguin, *

[*H., Baudoin, E., Maghraoui, T., … *]

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the context of urbanization. Environmen-

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 115

*Focus on Environment *

Focus Environ (2016), P116-119

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

* Short Note *

  • *

[*Basics for Sustainable Environment: Reduce Wastage, *]

*Reuse, and Recycle *

  • *

[* Rajesh Perumbilavil Kaithamanakallam1, *, Samudhra Sendhil2, Aarthi Rajesh3 *]

1Microbiology and Medical Education Unit, Faculty of Medicine, AIMST University,

Kedah Darul Aman, Malaysia; 2School of Economics, Faculty of Arts and Social

Sciences, Nottingham University Malaysia, Jalan Broga, 43500 Semenyih, Selangor,

Malaysia; 3Department of Pathology, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago,

9016 Dunedin, New Zealand

*Corresponding author; Email: [email protected]

We, in the name of consumerism, are

minimisation to the most favoured

destroying the only planet that supports

opinion ‘prevention’.

the life. All resources are depleting very

With this wide scope, we need to





focus on people’s awareness of these

sustainability questionable. Our Earth

issues at stake. The impact on the

which once hosted 5 billion species has

environment due to plastics, toxic

lost about 99% of it to extinction




(Novacek, 2014; Stearns et al., 2000). It

elements, the growing usage and limited

doesn’t stop there. Predictions state that

supply of potable water are just a few

human activities will result in the

examples. Deforestation leading to

Holocene extinction where 30% of the

global climate change as well as

existing species today may be extinct by

emerging diseases, the ecological ticking

2050 (Dawson et al., 2016; Hance et al. ,

time bomb crisis that most of the


earthlings are blissfully unaware off

Meanwhile, it is sad to state that

need to be addressed. Tapping the felt

we have managed to eradicate only one

need of the people is the key element to

infectious disease so far. By 2050, the

health education. For example awareness

only infectious disease that we have

campaign against infectious diseases

hopes of eradicating is poliomyelitis.

promoting immunisation is best targeted

The world is spiralling downwards.

against pregnant ladies; likewise the

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is the

environmental issues are best made

mantra for waste management and

aware by the introduction of ‘Tragedy of

environmental sustenance. The waste

commons’. The tragedy can include

hierarchy scope ranges from the least

overfishing in the ocean to misuse of

favoured opinion of disposal through

antibiotics to spam emails and many





more. Each spam email, even if not

opened, adds on significantly to the

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 116

Focus Environ (2016)

Basics for Sustainable Environment Kaithamanakallam et al

carbon foot print. World Wildlife Fund

evolutionary genetics of Honey bees to

(WWF) Australia has a human footprint

aid in their conservation. Genetic

calculator on its website allowing people

approaches can be used to modify plants

to track how much of the earth they are

to become resistant to insects, even

misusing with their lifestyle. The






website also mentions that we would





need approximately 3.6 earths to sustain

produce (DeWoody et al., 2010). This

life on this planet given our current

can reduce the burden of using

lifestyle. By 2050, humanity needs to

insecticides and potentially increase food

produce twice the amount of food we do


today in order to feed the forecast 9.7

Natural resources exist in a fixed

billion people (United Nations, 2015).

amount and can take millions of years to

For more on tragedy, one just needs to

get replaced. Once they are depleted,

review the Love canal landfill incident

they are depleted forever. Losses of

which signifies the importance of

forests lead to implications on the water





and the atmosphere. Less trees result in

generation. It also is a grim lesson on the

less rains. To quote the department of

precautions necessary to protect and

natural resources, South Carolina from

cover a landfill, especially to prevent

their study on Earth’s Natural Resources

leakage of leachate (Beck, 1979).

and Human Impacts, “Recycling helps

This is an era where forests are

the environment by slowing down the

cleared and cities built to accommodate

rate at which we have to burn garbage or

a world congress on environmental

put it in landfills. With fewer landfills

development. This proves that most

we can have more space for people to

conferences do not achieve what they

farm, live, and work. Recycling also

meant to in the first place. Deforestation

helps by reducing our need to consume

has resulted in cities being built in place

fresh natural resources to make new

of jungles leaving rodents and other

products. As a result, we can save these

vectors homeless. This in turn has

resources for use by future generations.

caused an alarming rise in the emergence





and re-emergence of infectious diseases.

energy and reduces pollution. This could

To counter the vector problem, humans

also help in slowing-down global climate

have used insecticides to fog the

change, another environmental problem

environment. This has resulted in

caused by burning fossil fuels like oil

reducing the number of queen bees

and gas.

(Goulson et al. , 2015). Albert Einstein

Earthlings have ignored long

once prophetically remarked, “Mankind

term and serious implications just to

will not survive the honeybees’

concentrate on short term gains. (A joke

disappearance for more than five years.”

as usual with a deep message states -

Queen bees are master pollinators and

Aliens observe that humans are the most

their extinction would result not only in

intelligent species in the universe as they

the world going honey-less but also will






affect a huge list of fruits and flowers

however, they also note that the humans

pollinated by the bees. Extensive

have directed nuclear missiles against

research has been done recently to

themselves). Mitochondrial DNA and





Ancestry genetic studies need to be

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 117

Focus Environ (2016)

Basics for Sustainable Environment Kaithamanakallam et al

publicised more to prove and convince

sources of energy and by creating

earthlings that they have arisen from a






common ancestor. Each one would

reducing waste; I: Informing people to

possess 99% of the same genome with

reuse a resource again without changing

each other. We all have varied genes,

or reprocessing it, for instance, using

including the genes from the countries

glassware instead of paper plates should

they have sworn to eternal enmity. This





should reduce wars (the biggest waste

information and adopting a healthy eco-

that cause havoc for years) and help us

friendly life style; M: adopting Modern

to focus on environmental and human





conservation. It is high time to join




together to combat the environmental

Sustaining the environment by recycling

issues together.

materials that can be used in another

Lack of awareness, poor planning

item; T: Transforming the environmental

and excessive tapping of resources has

and the peoples mind set to ensure a

led to the Holocene extinction event

better tomorrow for the next gen.

including co-extinction of many species.

It was hypothesised that Dodo’s and the


tambalacoque trees went into extinction

  • *

as they needed each other for their

[*Dawson, A. (2016). *] Extinction: A

survival (Temple, 1979). When a





predatory species becomes threatened or


extinct, this removes a check and

balance in the food chain on the

*DeWoody, *

*J.A., *

*Bickham, *

*J.W., *

population of prey previously consumed

*Michler, C.H., Nichols, K.M., *

by that predator. Consequentially, the

*Rhodes, O.E.Jr., and Keith E. *

prey population can explode (Primack,

*Woeste, *

*K.E. *

*eds. *

[*(2010). *]


Molecular Approaches in Natural

We are in need of a forum where




we can instil the awareness of the



ecological crisis we are dealing with and

University Press, 2010. * *

the solutions that lies closely embedded

  • *

within the problems themselves.

[*FAO (2016). *] The State of World

The environmental awareness

Fisheries and Aquaculture 2016.

programmes should aim to educate the

Contributing to food security and

younger generation about the importance

nutrition for all. Rome. 200 pp.

of saving the planet for themselves and

for the future generations.

[*Goulson, D., Nicholls, E., Botías, C., and *]

In summary, everyone should

*Rotheray, *

*E.L. *

[*(2015). *]


practice reduce, reuse, and recycle

declines driven by combined stress

concept in daily life which will help in

from parasites, pesticides, and lack

of flowers. * * Science[* 347(6229), *]

_] [_ h2. part to minimize the damage to

*1255957. *

environment for a sustainable future. We

can nurture nature, the next generation’s

[*Hance, J., (2015). *] “How humans are

future by using AIMST. Where these

driving the sixth mass extinction”.

alphabets stands for – A: Alternate

The Guardian[* *]

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 118

Focus Environ (2016)

Basics for Sustainable Environment Kaithamanakallam et al

[*Novacek, M. J., (2014). *] “Prehistory’s

*Love *

*Canal. *








Environment and Justice, P.O. Box

Times. Retrieved 25 December

6806, Falls

Church, Virginia






  • *


*Stearns, B.P., Stearns, S.C., Stearns, *


[*S.C., (2000). *] Watching, from the

Accessed on May 3, 2016.





  • *

University Press. p. 1921. ISBN

*United *

*Nations, *

*Department *

*of *

978-0-300-08469-6. Accessed on

*Economic and Social Affairs, *

May 2, 2016.

*Population *

*Division *


World Population Prospects: The

[*Temple, S.A. (1979). *] The dodo and the

2015 Revision, Key Findings and

tambalacoque tree. Science *203, *

Advance Tables. Working Paper


No. ESA/P/WP.241.


  • *








015.pdf. Accessed on May 4,

Accessed on May 4, 2016.


  • *

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 119

*Focus on Environment *

Focus Environ (2016), P120-122

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

* Short Note *

  • *

Natural Farming: Malaysian Farmers Experience

* *

N V Subbarow

National Farming Unit, Consumers Association of Penang, Penang, Malaysia

Email: [email protected]


avoids the use of synthetic chemicals, pesti-

cides, and other chemicals. Organic farming

In February 2005, the Consumers Associa-

systems rely on crop rotations, crop resi-

tion of Penang (CAP) embarked on Sustain-

dues, animal manures, legumes, green ma-

able Agriculture Project – to promote organ-

nures, off-farm organic wastes, mechanical

ic farming in Malaysia. The pioneers in this

cultivation, and biological pest control to

field were Namvalvar, Gopalakrishnan, a

maintain soil productivity, to supply nutri-

vermicomposting expert; a soil biologist and

ents to plants, and to control weeds and

Director of the Ecosciense Research Foun-

pests. All kinds of agricultural products are

dation from India Prof. Sultan Ahmed Is-

produced organically, including produce,

mail; Rajamanikam, a herbal specialist in

grains, meat, dairy, eggs, and fibers includ-

treating cattle diseases were invited by CAP

ing cotton. Now growing crops is not all

to conduct trainings for farmers and public

about using the latest, strongest chemical. It

on sustainable agriculture.

is also about using what is freely available

The organized programmes have

from Mother Nature and churning it into

been popular among the Chinese, Indian and

something useful. In this short note, I am

Malay farmers. The Chairman of the Farm-

sharing Malaysian farmers experience about

ers Association, Mr. Chayeemong took a

organic (also known as natural) farming.

keen interest in the programme and encour-

aged other Chinese farmers to join him.


These programmes have successfully edu-

  • *

cated many farmers about organic farming

*Case 1 *

using vermiculture.

  • *

About 36 Chinese farmers went to

Somasundaram is one of the first farmer

India for Natural Farming Study Tour in

who started Organic farming. During Mr.

2006 which was organized by CAP. Vari-

Gopalakrishnan’s visit to Malaysia he intro-

ous Training and Awareness programmes

duced Somasundaram to organic farming by

have been organized by CAP in Penang,

guiding him in finding earthworms. The

Kedah, Perak, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan

earthworms have multiplied fast and so has

and Johor for farmers, public, students,

Somasundaram‘s income. He was full of

teachers and trainee teachers.

praise for this system of farming and his

What is organic farming all about?

new found friends-the earthworms. This pi-

Organic agriculture is a way of farming that

oneer project of producing vermicompost

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 120

Focus Environ (2016)

Natural Farming: Malaysian Farmers Experience Subbarow

from farm waste started with just two beds,

ter way of farming. His search was soon an-

measuring three meters by 1.5 meters. These

swered by organic farming. He says he feels

beds were sheltered from extreme climates

much safer working with the plants now.

and were covered with cow dung. The cow

Jasmine plants like any other plant has a

dung is produced by Somasundaram’s twen-

peak season and at the end of this season the

ty cows and dried over a period of two

yield is very low; however, after switching

weeks. During this time the chicken eat all

to organic farming, Sanmargam says that the

the worms and keep the cow dung free of

yield remained consistent till end of the

worms. The drying helps to make the cow

flowering season. Another interesting thing

dung completely safe and ready for use.

that Sanmargam brought out is the differ-

He also prepares ‘Panchakavya’, a

ence in the way birds react to the herbal re-

multi-purpose fertilizer. This fertilizer can

pellant and the chemical pesticide. Earlier,

be easily prepared at home using fresh milk,

he says the birds never ate the insects after

yogurt, banana, egg, yeast, molasses, yeast,

the chemical pesticide repelled them; how-

cow- urine, coconut and manure being an

ever, thanks to the miracle herbal repellant

indispensable component. Its usefulness

the birds gladly eat the insects.

surpasses the unpleasant smell.

Currently, Sanmargam is renting one

Somasundaram not only uses Pan-

acre of land to breed earthworm, planting

chakavya for his jasmine plants and vegeta-

vegetables, rearing goats and chickens. He

bles such as ladies finger, brinjal, bitter

has 4 earthworm breeding beds whereby he

gourd and chilly. He says the Jasmine

produces vermicast.

plants have a strong fragrance and flowers

remain fresh longer. He was surprised to

*Case 3 *

find the growth rate of his chickens multi-

  • *

plied and his cows producing better quality

Kanniappan from Kulai, Johor has been ven-


tured into organic lime planting after attend-

Among the other fertilizers, Vermi-

ing CAP’s organic farming training. He used

wash is another famous one. Coconut milk

to harvest ping-pong ball sized lemons on

serves as plant growth enhancer it is com-

his one-acre orchard, is now reaping fruits

monly used.

that are bigger than hockey balls. It hap-

pened after he replaced chemical fertilizers

Case 2

with organic fertilizers and pest repellents.

He has set up a vermiculture unit that

K. Sanmargam started growing Jasmines in

produces 80 kg of vermicast per month

his backyard as a past time for his wife.

which he uses as fertilizers. He earns at least

What started, as a past time is flourishing

RM 500 a month from lime, and RM 250

fast. K. Sanmargam was introduced to or-

from vermiculture.

ganic farming by Gopalakrishnan using

vermiculture. The construction of earth-

*Case 4 *

worm beds is in progress. Sanmargam like

  • *

many other farmers has set aside all his

Md Saad Bin Haji Ali is a paddy farmer

chemicals. He says that his wife had been

from Alor Setar who experimented using

suffering from breathing problems and on a

panchakavya and neem oil on his farm last

visit to the doctor; she was diagnosed with

year. To his surprise, he realized a 35% in-

asthma and underlying facial burns not visi-

crease in production after using panchakav.

ble to the naked eye. He swore to find a bet-

This farmer stated that he was unable to take

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 121

Focus Environ (2016)

Natural Farming: Malaysian Farmers Experience Subbarow

the smell of pesticides. This farmer is feed-

Besides Somasundaram, Sanmar-

ing his dog with panchakavya and finds it

gam, Kanniappan,, Md Saad and their

healthy and fat.

friends, farmers from Hulu Yam are also

On the whole, about 200 farmers

shifting towards organic farming. Currently,

have already adopted non-chemical alterna-

they are trying composting in a bigger scale

tives to farming and 500 paddy farmers are

for their vegetable farms.

experimenting effectiveness of vermicom-

post and panchakavya in their fields. The _]


number of farmers moving towards natural

farming is expected to increase because of

Author is grateful to the farmers (men-

the benefits and sustainability.

tioned) for sharing their experience.

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 122

*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

*Abstracts *

  • *

*Natural Resources and Conservation *

*Fadzil bin Abd Kadir *

Sungai Petani Municipal Council, Kompleks MPSPK, Jalan Patani, 08000 Sugai Petani, Kedah,


Email: [email protected]


  • *

Natural resources are resources that exist without the actions of humankind. This includes all

valued characteristics such as magnetic, gravitational, and electrical properties and forces. On

earth, we include sunlight, atmosphere, water, land, air (includes all minerals) along with all

vegetation and animal life that naturally subsists upon or within the heretofore identified

characteristics and substances. A natural resource may exist as a separate entity such as fresh

water, and air, as well as a living organism such as a fish, or it may exist in an alternate form

which must be processed to obtain the resource such as metal ores, petroleum, and most forms of

energy. Some natural resources such as sunlight and air can be found everywhere, and are known

as ubiquitous resources. However, most resources only occur in small sporadic areas, and are

referred to as localized resources. During my presentation, I will talk about ‘renewable and

nonrenewable resources’, ‘conserving natural resources’, ‘reducing, reusing and recycling of

waste’, ‘soil pollution’, ‘water pollution’, ‘air pollution’ and other aspects of environment to

highlight the importance of natural resources conservation.

[*Keywords: *]Air; conservation; nature; pollution; resources; water

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 123

*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

*Biodegradable Plastics for a Sustainable Environment *

*Sudesh K. *

School of Biological Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800, Penang, Malaysia

Phone No.: (+6) 04-6534367; Email: [email protected]

  • *


  • *

Bioplastics are mostly derived from renewable plant sources such as sugars and plant oils. They

have a high potential in substituting petrochemical plastics as a renewable and sustainable

material. Most types of bioplastics are also biodegradable, which makes them popular in

developed countries. Switching to the use of biodegradable plastics not only reduces our

dependence on fossil fuels but at the same time helps to fight global warming. For the past three

decades, biodegradable plastics, namely polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) has been the subject of

intense investigation due to its thermoplastic properties as well as being biodegradable and

biocompatible. PHA is also being researched in Malaysia because palm oil can be used as an

efficient feedstock to produce PHA via microbial fermentation. It is accumulated as water

insoluble storage polyester in the cell cytoplasm of bacteria. However, successful

commercialization of this biodegradable plastic is currently hindered by its high cost compared

to existing petroleum-based plastics in the market. The main reason for costly production of

PHA is its recovery and purification process from bacterial cells. A novel biological extraction

method has recently been developed by feeding freeze-dried cells containing PHA to animal

models. Since PHA granules are not digested by the digestive enzymes, the granules are excreted

in the form of fecal matter. The resulting whitish fecal matter consisted of more than 90 wt% of

PHA. The biologically recovered PHA has been successfully used in the development of

controlled release fertilizers.

Keywords: Biodegradable; bioplastics; fermentation; polyhydroxyalkanoate

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 124

*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

[*Environmental Forensics: An Overview of Selected Cases *]

*Hj. Mohamed Zaini bin Abdul Rahman *

ACM, Director, Department of Chemistry Malaysia, Penang Branch, Malaysia

Email: [email protected]


  • *

Environmental forensics is a complex discipline where forensic investigation techniques are

applied to determine the origin and source of contamination. Successful investigations need to

apply knowledge on chemical fate and sampling protocols with sound statistical understanding,

apart from being trained in the fields of analytical and environmental chemistry. To promote the

awareness, an overview of environmental forensics with few selected cases received by the

Department of Chemistry Malaysia, Penang Branch will be presented.

Keywords: Contamination; detection; environment; forensics; pollution

ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 125

*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

*Environmental Pollution and Its Biological Impacts *

Palanisamy Arulselvan, Katyakyini Muniandy, Sivapragasam Gothai *

Laboratory of Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics, Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra

Malaysia, 43400, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia


The environment plays an important role in human and animal health along with its well-being.

Various key environmental factors such as physical, chemical and microbial can have

implications for human and animal health. We have good constant cross interactions with the

environment; therefore, health is considerably determined by the environmental quality.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), definition of health emphasizes on the

physical, mental and social well-being, hence, human health is considered as a complete

perception reaching beyond, in the absence of diseases. Apart from, human well-being and

quality of life are matter to a notable number of environmental factors from indoor and outdoor.

In the last three decades, there has been accumulative global concern over the health impacts

attributed from numerous environmental pollutions, especially the global burden of chronic

disease. The WHO predicted that more than a quarter of diseases faced by mankind nowadays

occur due to continued exposure to harmful environmental pollutants. These environmental

factors associated diseases are not intermittently diagnosed, however, we identified in the later or

chronic stages. Overall environmental pollution has an imperative impact on living organisms,

including health and physiology of human and animals. The impact on our health not only

comprises the consequences of air, ground and water pollution, but also other factors such as

genetic susceptibility, food contamination, radiation, lifestyle and life quality. Adding to it,

notable pollutants such as pesticides, heavy metals, fluorine and other agro-chemicals are the

primary cause of environmental toxicity, which affects humans, animals, plants and wildlife. The

chronic and minimal contact of pollutants is often linked to chemical residues in animal system.

As for subclinical effects, these include mainly oxidative stress, immunotoxicity,

carcinogenicity, and endocrine disruption.

Keywords: Carcinogenicity; environmental pollution; immunotoxicity

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*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

*Impact of Environmental Alteration and Human Infectious *

*Diseases *

  • *

*S. Suresh Kumar *

Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400,

Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Email: [email protected]

  • *

  • *


Climate changes by human activities influenced the distribution, reproduction, and survival of

disease between pathogens and host. Several environment-associated variables also influence the

means of pathogen transmission and the changeover of non-pathogenic to infectious diseases,

including air-, water-, and food- or vector-borne diseases. This may present new health threat to

human beings, and further multiply existing health problems. One of the key factor influencing

the likelihood and outcome of disease emergence is the pathogen invasiveness, which may result

from the combination of pathogen traits including opportunism. Particularly, high mutation rate

in viruses and bacteria capable of acquiring genetic material and pathogens infecting multiple

hosts are more likely to turn into an emerging disease agent. Some species such as

Legionella spp. and non-tuberculous Mycobacteria (NTM) are among the microbes that arise to

be pathogenic due to environmental changes. Recently, numbers of peoples infected with

nontuberculous Mycobacteria (NTM) have increased worldwide. Disturbances to microbial

ecosystems caused by the changes in environment system might lead to NTM diseases.

Environmental alteration cause disturbance on the ecosystems that leads to occurrence o f

infectious diseases and finally give impact on human society. Thus, clarifying the relationship

between environmental alterations and changes in microbial ecosystems is important to

contribute to the restoration of the health of the ecosystem and also to prevent further

outbreaks of infectious diseases. It is imperative to recognize research development and gaps

on how human society may respond to, acclimatize to, and prepare for the related changes.

Scientific advances, early warning systems, public health awareness campaign are needed

along with research association between climate change and shifts in infectious diseases.

Keywords: Infectious diseases; nontuberculous Mycobacteria; public health awareness

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*Focus on Environment *

Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development

Focus Environ (2016)

[*Recycling of Household Wastes (Resources) for Cleaner *]

*Environment *

*Don Theseira *

Green Crusaders, Bukit Mertajam, Penang, Malaysia

Email: [email protected]


Disposal of the household waste is a challenge in most of the counties. For public awareness

purpose, I do demonstration on how we can recycle our household wastes for cleaner

environment and income generation. I will be doing a demo on reducing, recycling and reusing

wastes to promote the environmental cleanliness.

[*Keywords: *] Environment; household waste; recycle; reuse

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*Appendices *

[*Appendix 1: A Brief Biography of Speakers *]

  • *

*Biography of Prof. Sultan Ahmed Ismail *

Dr. Sultan Ahmed Ismail, M.Sc., M.Phil., Ph.D., D.Sc., (9.10.1951)

is Managing Director of the Ecoscience Research Foundation, a not-

for profit organization, in Chennai. He was the Head of Zoology and

later the Department of Biotechnology, The New College, Chennai.

Has done extensive work (both research and applied) on ecology

and environment, earthworms and organic inputs since 1978. He has

been associated with several farmers and self-help groups promoting

the concepts of ecology, sustainability, organic concepts, waste

management, waste water treatment, etc. He was awarded the

CASTME award for 1994-95 in the UK, the Arignar Anna Award

by the Department of Environment of the Government of Tamil

Nadu for 2005, and the award of Excellence presented by His

Excellency Governor of Jharkhand in Dec 2010. Classified as one

among the “TOP 10” people of Tamil Nadu for 2013 by Anantha

Vikathan. He has travelled widely in India and abroad, with rich

expertise in environmental issues. His book “The Earthworm Book” is popular among both

academics and others interested in earthworms. He also authored “simple tasks great concepts”

which is a boon to science teachers and students. It consists of 100 life science experiments

which any child can perform without a laboratory. His earthworm book has been translated in

Tamil as well as in Chinese. He has published more than 75 papers in National and International

Journals, guided 32 M.Phil students and 17 Ph.D, students. More info about his work can be had

from www.erfindia.org or just google his name. * *

  • *

  • *

*Biography of Dr. Fadzil Bin Abdul Kadir *

Dr. Fadzil Bin Abdul Kadir, AMK., BCK will enlighten us with

his talk on ‘Natural Resources and Conservation’. He holds a

doctorate in local government studies. He started his career in the

Kedah state government service as a Kedah civil service officer

(KCS) and has worked as a district land administrator, director of

water services board and state chief auditor. Presently, Dr. Fadzil

is the secretary of Sungai Petani municipal council.

* *

* *

* *

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*Biography of Prof. Dr. Sudesh Kumar *

Prof. Dr. Sudesh Kumar’s main research interest is in the design and

synthesis of biodegradable polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) using

microbial systems. He started research in this area in 1992 and

obtained his Masters in Biotechnology from University Malaya.

Then, he continued his research for his PhD, which was sponsored

by Japanese Government (Monbusho). The research was conducted

at RIKEN Institute, Japan under the supervision of Prof. Y. Doi. He

obtained his PhD in 1999 and then continued as a Special

Postdoctoral Researcher at RIKEN. He returned to Malaysia under

the Brain Gain program and joined the School of Biological

Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia as a lecturer in 2001 and became

a full professor in 2011. He has significantly contributed to the

research and development of biodegradable plastics in Malaysia from palm oil products. In

addition to the numerous scientific publications in both local and international journals, he has 6

granted patents, two of which has been successfully licensed.

Biography of Hj. Mohamed Zaini bin Abdul Rahman

Hj. Mohamed Zaini bin Abdul Rahman earned his B.Sc. in Chemistry

from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada (1985) and joined

the Department of Chemistry, Malaysia on 15 May 1985. He later

continued his studies and obtained the Certificate in Forensic Medicine

and M.Sc. in Forensic Toxicology, both from Glasgow University,

Scotland (1991). He had enjoyed servicing the nation in various fields

within the Forensic, Environmental Health and Applied Science


He was promoted to the Senior Chemist position leading the newly formed Pesticide Residues

Analytical Centre, Department of Chemistry Malaysia, Perak Branch on 1 April 2003. Six years

later, he was seconded to the Office of the Permanent Delegation of Malaysia to UNESCO, Paris

as Malaysia’s 1st Science Attache to UNESCO. Having completed his term, Hj. Zaini was called

to serve the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), Putrajaya as Deputy

Undersecretary, National Oceanography Directorate. He left MOSTI and moved back to the

Department of Chemistry as Penang Branch Director on 17 December 2013. Hj. Zaini had been

an active member of Institute Kimia Malaysia, having served the Institute as Honorary Secretary

IKM Perak Branch and is currently the Vice Chairman of IKM Northern Branch.

* *

* *

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*Biography Mr. Don Theseira and Ms. Mylene Ooi *

Mr. Don Theseira and Ms. Mylene Ooi from





enthusiasts, who started their household waste

recycling project in 1996. This retired couple

are based in Bukit Mertajam, Penang and they

have travelled across Malaysia to educate





residents’ associations on the need to recycle

household waste. They also teach the art of

composting household scraps, using a method

which Don has perfected over the years. Don

and Mylene have successfully combined

recycling with charitable causes by donating

the proceeds of each recycling project to

charity organisations. Besides being featured

in countless magazines and newspapers over the years, they have also been awarded the title

“Everyday Heroes” by Readers’ Digest in 2002 for their tireless efforts in helping the

environment. They present on how you can achieve zero waste, how to recycle your household

waste and at the same time, how you can raise money for your favourite charity organisation.

They have presented more than 250 talks on recycling and participated in 8 exhibitions. He has

received many awards that includes:

 Reader’s Digest ‘Every Day Hero’ (featured in December 2002 issue)

 Guang Ming Heroes (Chinese daily 14 April 2005)

 Received PKT title given out by The Governor of Penang (13 July 2008)

* *

*Biography of Dr. Haslinda Mohd Anuar *

Dr. Haslinda Mohd Anuar is a Senior Lecturer at School of Law,

Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM). She obtained LL.B (HONS) from

the International Islamic University in 1994, and LL.M (Public

Law) from University of Wales Aberystwyth, United Kingdom in

1996, she then been awarded with her PhD in Environmental Law

from Newcastle University, United Kingdom in 2015. In academic,

she involves in a number of researches, i.e., Kajian Penerokaan

Terhadap Hukuman Di Bawah Undang-Undang Berkaitan

Pencemaran Perairan Daratan Di Malaysia; Kajian Terhadap Tahap

Pengetahuan, Amalan Dan Sikap Berkaitan Alam Sekitar Di

Kalangan Pelajar Sekolah – Kubang Pasu; and Peraturan Berkaitan

Pengurusan Sisa Pepejal Di Utara Semenanjung Malaysia. Dr

Haslinda Mohd Anuar also produced several articles in environmental issues: Mohd. Anuar, H.,

& Wahab, H.A. (2015). Sisa Pepejal dan Pembersihan Awam: Pengurusan dan Perundangan.

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Solid Waste Solutions Journal. 1(), 1 – 14; Yaacob, N., Wahab, H.A., & Mohd. Anuar, H.

(2015). Peraturan Yang Mengawal Selia Industri Getah dalam Menangani Pencemaran Air di

Malaysia. 4th International Conference on Law & Society. 1(1), 1 – 10; Mohd. Anuar, H. (2014).

Environmental Governance in Malaysia: An Overview. The UUM International Conference on

Governance 2014. 00(), 154 – 162; Mohd. Anuar, H. (2013). The concept of environmental

rights: an overview. 7th UUM International Legal Conference 2013; Mohd. Anuar, H. (2012).

Towards An Environmental Sustainability: Environmental Education or Environmental Rights?.

Proceeding of The 5th International Borneo Business Conference (IBBC) 2012. (), 108 – 113;

Mohd. Anuar, H. (2011). An Overview of Public Participation under EIA. Proceeding of The 6th

UUM International Law Conference 2011. (1), 346 – 351; Mohd. Anuar, H. (2011). Right to

Information on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Proceeding of the International Soft

Science Conference 2011 (ISSC2011); and Mohd. Anuar, H., & Wahab, H.A. (2010). Akta

Pepejal Sisa Pepejal dan Pembersihan Awam 2007: Satu Pandangan. International Seminar

Economic Regional Development, Law and Governance in Malaysia and Indonesia.

*Biography of Dr. PalanisamyArulselvan *

Dr. PalanisamyArulselvan received his Doctorate in the field of

Biochemistry from the University of Madras, India and he was

trained as a post-doctoral researcher at Academia Sinica, Taiwan.

Currently, he is continuing his scientific research career as a

Research Fellow at Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra

Malaysia, Malaysia. He has published over 65 papers in

internationally reputed journals, refereed proceedings and book

chapter. His current research focuses on natural products based drug

discovery; nano-drug delivery system and role of inflammatory

signalling targets in diabetic wound healing. He has won many

national and international level scientific awards from different

organization. He is serving as Associate Editor and Editorial board

member of few internationally reputed scientific Journals.

*Biography of Dr. Suresh Kumar *

Dr. Suresh Kumar has degrees in Microbiology (B.Sc), Life

science specialization in bio-macromolecules (M.Sc.,) and

Microbiology (Ph.D.,). He is currently working as a senior

lecturer in Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia. He has been

Post-Doctoral research Fellow in National Central University

and National Taiwan University, Taipei-Taiwan in the field of

yeast genetics and Stem cells. He also has been Senior Research







Laboratory Ltd, Mumbai, India, R&D officer (Fermentation of

Microbial drugs) in Gujarat Themis Biosyn Ltd.), Vapi, Gujarat,

India, a Senior and Junior Research fellow (Fermentation and

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purification of enzymes) in University of Delhi South campus, New Delhi, India. Currently, he is

also a consultant in one of the Project of King Saud University, Saudi Arabia and he is an editor

for PLoS One and American Journal of Tissue Engineering, Columbia international Publishing.

His research interests have focused on Infectious Diseases in Tuberculosis, Dengue and

Leptospirosis, Bio-macromolecules, Yeast genetics, Fermentation and purification of Microbial

drugs and enzymes, Stem cells with Infectious diseases, Stem cell niches, Induced Pluripotent

stem cells.

Biography of Prof. Dr. Kannan Narayanan

Prof. Dr. Kannan Narayanan is essentially an Interdisciplinary person

with background in biology and chemistry with a specific focus on

environmental problems. He has done basic toxicology on pesticides on

house hold pests in his B.Sc. & M.Sc (1970-75) and got into

Environmental Analytical Chemistry during his PhD work in India

(1976-85) where he studied the chemodynamics of pesticides in semi-

tropical climate. Thus he acquainted himself with gas chromatographic

techniques and has developed multiple residue methodologies for

pesticides in agricultural produce. The work he developed in India

fetched him a Monbukagakusho fellowship in Japan (1985-89) where he

continued his environmental studies on industrial trace chemicals such as

PCBs, Dioxins etc. He went from local to global studies involving migratory whales and birds to

establish global distribution of anthropogenic pollutants. He was largely responsible for the

scientific awareness on dioxin-like PCBs in humans and other biota. He also got an opportunity

to observe and implement in-vitro cellular bioassays for the impact assessment of toxic

pollutants in biota, marine sediments, water and terrestrial samples. His studies on co-planar

PCBs took him to Germany where he worked for more than 10 years at GEOMAR Helmholtz-

Zentrum für Ozeanforschung, Kiel (1989-2002). There he refined his knowledge on utilizing

non-radioactive, anthropogenic chemical signatures in understanding biogeochemistry of ocean

processes such as sedimentation, ocean circulation etc. He continued this research later in Korea

(2003-2011) with a more regional focus, such as in the Yellow sea, South and East seas. Korea

offered him an opportunity to develop his skills on outreach activities and capacity building for

developing nations. He was the program director for APEC Marine Environmental Training and

Educational Center (AMETEC) at KIOST, Korea. This international training and teaching

experience gave him the power to be adaptive and innovative in his research at UPM, Malaysia

(2013-16). With essential teaching load on environmental courses he utilized Final Year Project

(FYP scheme) to work on environmental problems in Malaysia. He developed simple semi-

permeable membrane devices to monitor air pollution. With minimum equipment and

measurement techniques like GCMS, HS GC-FID, AAS his team measured toxic chemicals in

waste motor engine oil, atmosphere and marine sediments. They utilized marine micro debris

such as plastic pellets to understand marine pollution in Malaysia. He is also involved in

improving Gas Purge Micro extraction techniques with Yanbian University China and Università

di Foggia, Italy on Green Chemistry for a sustainable world. Thus his academic interests include

the transport and fate of industrial contaminants and hormone disruptors in the environment. This

includes, aspects of intermediate transport, pollution modelling, degradation processes, human

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exposure pathways, bio-geochemistry of POPs and their use as unconventional chemical tracers

in understanding Ocean Processes. He loves teaching and mentoring and he has taught students

at tertiary level and guided students for their Master/M.Phil/PhD courses. He has a strong track

record on publication and his current H index is 31. He has working relationship with Institutions

in China, Korea, Japan, Europe and USA which could be utilized for the benefit of a hosting


  • *

*Biography of Prof. Dr. P. K. Rajesh *

Prof. Dr. P. K. Rajesh has held academic positions at Chennai,

India and at Kedah, Malaysia. He joined AIMST University in

Malaysia in March 2005, where he is currently holding the posts of

Head of the Unit of Microbiology and Medical Education. He was

the former Deputy Dean of Preclinical studies and the former Dean

of faculty of Medicine at AIMST University. Dr.Rajesh is a Fellow

of the Academy of Clinical Microbiology, Life member of the

Malaysian society of microbiologists, and also a life member of the

college of chest physicians, New Delhi. He has authored 18

publications in peer reviewed indexed journals on various fields of

clinical microbiology and medical education. Dr Rajesh has

presented papers on many international platforms. In March 2011

Dr. Rajesh received the bioinnovation medal from Malaysian biotechnology society for his work

on bacteriophage therapy. He is passionate about youth empowerment and leadership and has

pioneered the world first preclinical quiz which was held at AIMST in 2011. He is also advisor

to the RED committee a charity organization working in AID of the less privileged patients. He

organized district 3310 RYLA 2013/2014 and was invited to be an inspiration coach at the

international RYLA in Sydney in May 2014. He was the president of the Rotary Club of Bandar

Sungai Petani 2015-16 and is in charge of new generations 2016-17. A winner of the Rotary

International’s 5 avenues of citation award in 2014. Dr Rajesh was involved in international

community service with regard to water and sanitation in India and Bangladesh in 2013-15. Dr

Rajesh is a life member of the World Wildlife Fund and is an active supporter of the preservation

of forests.

*Biography of Prof. Dr. Quamrul Hasan *

Prof. Dr. Quamrul Hasan has a Ph.D. in Biotechnology from Kyoto

University, Japan. Prior to joining at Universiti Utara Malaysia

(UUM) as a full professor in August 2014 he was managing his own

firm-Bioinnovare Co., Ltd., an international business development

consulting company, based in Kobe, Japan which he founded in 2009.

Prior to that he was a Professor at Japan Advanced Institute of

Science and Technology (JAIST), a national postgraduate university,

in Ishikawa, Japan (1997- 2005). He also worked for Procter &

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Gamble Company, as an R&D Scientist and Manager (1994-2001). Prof. Dr. Quamrul Hasan

established a non-profit organization – Japan Halal Research Institute (JAHARI) in Hyogo,

Japan in 2014 and he became the founder Chairman of this organization. A Japanese national, he

had been living in Kobe, Japan with his family since 1994.

Some of the key achievements of Prof. Dr. Quamrul Hasan are:

 Professional biotechnologist with more than twenty five years of experiences in research

and management (in Japan and USA)

 Extensively experienced in both the Western and Japanese (multi-cultural) business


 Invented, co-developed and successfully launched a health-care consumer product, from

original idea and laboratory test to prototyping and field-testing (Febreze- Allergen

Reducer has been globally marketed by Procter & Gamble since 2004)

 Recipient of Procter & Gamble Innovation Award

 Published more than 50 patents and articles.

At UUM, currently Prof. Quamrul Hasan is also the Director of an international research center

collaborating with the universities and companies in Japan, which were initiated by him.

*Biography of Dr. Md. Aminur Rahman *

Dr. Md. Aminur Rahman has been working as a Senior Research

Fellow (Senior Associate Professor Equivalent) in the Institute of

Bioscience, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) since January, 2010. He

has been involved in teaching/supervising undergraduate and

postgraduate students in various fields of marine sciences, fisheries

and aquaculture as well as conducting research on “Biology, ecology,

diversity, breeding, seed production, culture and biochemical

composition of sea urchins, sea cucumbers and fishes”. Meanwhile, he

is involved in some international collaborative research work on

marine biology, fisheries and aquaculture with scientists of different

institutes, including Smithsonian Institution (USA), Australian

Nuclear Science and Technology Organization (Australia), Sultan

Qaboos University (Oman), Kindai University, Japan, Sinop University (Turkey) etc., while

others are under the process of establishment. Before that, Dr. Rahman had obtained his M.S.

and Ph.D. degrees in Marine and Environmental Sciences from University of the Ryukyus,

Okinawa, Japan (1995-2001), where he also did two years (2003-2005) JSPS postdoctoral

research on “marine biology, reproduction, fertilization, hybridization, speciation and

aquaculture in the Indo-Pacific sea urchins”. He also worked in the Smithsonian Tropical

Research Institute, Panama, and USA for two years (2007-2009) in the same field with Atlantic

sea urchins as the Smithsonian postdoctoral researcher. In addition, he worked as a Chief

Researcher in the Ocean Critters Ranch, Inc., Crowley, Texas, USA on “breeding and

propagation of various marine ornamental fishes and corals”. Moreover, he worked as a senior

scientist in Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute during 1988 to 2007 in various fields of

Breeding Biology, Nursing, Aquaculture and Fisheries Management. His expertise areas broadly

lie in Marine and Freshwater Biology, Limnology and Aquatic Ecology, Reproductive Biology

and Fertilization kinetics, Population dynamics, Breeding, Nursing and Seed Production,

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Aquaculture and Conservation, and Taxonomy and Evolution. His multidisciplinary research and

educational backgrounds provide him a unique and novel perspective in conducting research

work in a diverse field of Aquatic Biology and Ecology, Marine and Environmental sciences,

Fish Nutrition, Aquaculture and Fisheries Sciences, and Biodiversity conservation, and thus

enable him to coordinate with scholars in different academic disciplines. Dr. Rahman has

published 110 scientific papers in international and nationally reputed high impact journals, 19

referred proceedings, 2 books and 12 book chapters. A good number (22) of scientific papers

have also been presented and published in international conferences, symposia and workshops.

He has also been serving as editors and editorial board members of some reputed journals and


Biography of Mr N V Subbarow

Mr N V Subbarow has been serving with Consumers Association of

Penang for the past 40 years. He has been actively involved in

organising many Health campaigns in CAP namely Anti Smoking,

Anti Alcohol and Anti Pesticides Campaigns. At present he is the

Coordinator for the CAP’s Sustainable Agriculture Project. He has

been advocating for Chemical Free farming and is working closely

with farmers, teachers, government officials, housewives, students of

primary, secondary and higher learning institutions. He is also

engaged in developing urban garden techniques for urban dwellers.

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

[*Appendix 2: WED-2016 Events held at AIMST University *]

  • *

[*A. WED-2016 Event 1 ─ Planting trees in AIMST University campus *]

This event was held on June 6, 2016. The event information and some snaps are given


Date of event: June 6, 2016 (Monday)

Time: 8.00am – 10.30 am

Meeting point: Foyer, Admin building

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  • *

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

[*B. WED-2016 Event 2 ─ Slogan writing competition *]

Info: This competition was open to all staff and students of the AIMST University.

Participants were allowed to submit multiple slogans for the competition by following the

guidelines made available on university’s website.

We had received a total of 417 slogan entries from which winners were selected by the


*Winners of the competition *

*Prize Winning Slogan of *

*Prize *

*Winner *

*the Winner *


(Cash prize Malaysian

“Nurture Nature, The Next

Ringgit (RM) 500 +

Generation’s Future”


Dr. P.K. Rajesh

1st Runner up

“Earth is a divine

(Cash Prize Malaysian

expression; don’t spoil it

Ringgit (RM) 300 +

with carbon impression”


Dr. Kailash Kharkwal

2nd Runner up

(Cash Prize Malaysian

“Pollution is not an illusion,

Ringgit (RM) 200 +

it is your creation”


Ms. Ashadeep Kaur Vidwan

[*C. WED-2016 Event 3 ─ Trash to treasure innovation competition *]

The event information and some snaps are given below:

[Date of event: *]September 22, 2016[ *]

[Duration : *]8.00 am – 5.00 pm[ *]

[Location : *]AIMST University, Jalan Bedong, Semeling, 08100, Bedong, Kedah[ *]

Info: Twenty-two ( 22) school teams had participated in this competition[* *]

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

[*Special Presence: *]

DCP ® Dato’ Dr Yew Chong Hooi, Council Member, Institut Kimia Malaysia &

President of Forensic Society of Malaysia

 Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mas Rosemal Hakim Mas Haris, Chairman, Institut Kimia

Malaysia (Northern Branch)

 Tn. Hj. Mohamed Zaini b. Abdul Rahman, Director, Jabatan Kimia Malaysia,

Cawangan Pulau Pinang, Jalan Tull, 10450 Pulau Pinang.

[* Winners of the competition* *]

*Prize *

*Winner *

SMK ST George (Girls),


Pulau Pinag

MRSM Transkrian Nibong

1st Runner up

Tebal, Pulau Pinang

2nd Runner up

SMK Ibrahim, Kedah

*The prizes were sponsored by Institut Kimia Malaysia (IKM).

[*D. WED-2016 Event 4 ─ Inter school quiz competition *]

The event information is given below:

  • *

[Date of event: *]September 22, 2016[ *]

[Duration : *]8.00 am – 5.00 pm[ *]

[Location : *]AIMST University, Jalan Bedong, Semeling, 08100, Bedong, Kedah[ *]

Info: In total, 24 school teams had participated in the interschool environmental quiz


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*Winners of the competition *

*Prize *

[*Winner (School Team) *]


SMK Khir Johari

1st Runner up

SMK Kota Kuala Muda

2nd Runner up

SMK Sin Min

[*E. WED-2016 Event 5 ─ Intervarsity debate competition *]

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The event information is given below:

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[Date of event: *]September 22, 2016[ *]

[Duration : *]8.00 am – 5.00 pm[ *]

[*Location : *]AIMST University, Jalan Bedong, Semeling, 08100, Bedong, Kedah

Info: Six (6) teams had participated for this intervarsity environmental debate


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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

*Winners of the competition *

*Prize *

*Winner *



University Malaysia,


Multimedia University

1st Runner up

Malaysia, Malaysia

University Malaysia Pahang,

2nd Runner up


[*F. WED-2016 Event 6 ─ World environment day cycling event – ride for fun *]

The event information is given below:

Date of event: 16 October, 2016.

Duration: 7.30 am (Flag Off)

Venue (Start and Finish): AIMST University to Tupah to AIMST University

[*Info: *]219 cyclist participated in the event.

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WED-2016 Events

Held at AIMST University, Malaysia

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ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5; eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 147

How you can help in saving the world?

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[*Appendix 3: How you can help in saving the world? *]

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*A. Things you can do from your couch *

1. Save electricity by plugging appliances into a power strip and turning them off

completely when not in use, including your computer.

2. Stop paper bank statements and pay your bills online or via mobile. No paper, no need for

forest destruction.

3. Share, don’t just like. If you see an interesting social media post about women’s rights or

climate change, share it so folks in your network see it too.

4. Speak up! Ask your local and national authorities to engage in initiatives that don’t harm

people or the planet. You can also voice your support for the Paris Agreement and ask

your country to ratify it or sign it if it hasn’t yet.

5. Don’t print. See something online you need to remember? Jot it down in a notebook or

better yet a digital post-it note and spare the paper.

6. Turn off the lights. Your TV or computer screen provides a cosy glow, so turn off other

lights if you don’t need them.

7. Do a bit of online research and buy only from companies that you know have sustainable

practices and don’t harm the environment.

8. Report online bullies. If you notice harassment on a message board or in a chat room, flag

that person.

9. Stay informed. Follow your local news and stay in touch with the Global Goals online or

on social media at @GlobalGoalsUN.

10. Tell us about your actions to achieve the global goals by using the hashtag #globalgoals

on social networks.

11. Offset your carbon emissions! You can calculate your carbon footprint and purchase

climate credit from Climate Neutral Now.

*B. Things you can do at home *

1. Air dry. Let your hair and clothes dry naturally instead of running a machine. If you do

wash your clothes, make sure the load is full.

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How you can help in saving the world?

2. Take short showers. Bathtubs require gallons more water than a 5-10-minute shower.

3. Eat less meat, poultry, and fish. More resources are used to provide meat than plants.

4. Freeze fresh produce and leftovers if you don’t have the chance to eat them before they

go bad. You can also do this with take-away or delivered food, if you know you will not

feel like eating it the next day. You will save food and money.

5. Compost—composting food scraps can reduce climate impact while also recycling


6. Recycling paper, plastic, glass & aluminium keeps landfills from growing.

7. Buy minimally packaged goods.

8. Avoid pre-heating the oven. Unless you need a precise baking temperature, start heating

your food right when you turn on the oven.

9. Plug air leaks in windows and doors to increase energy efficiency.

10. Adjust your thermostat, lower in winter, higher in summer.

11. Replace old appliances with energy efficient models and light bulbs.

12. If you have the option, install solar panels in your house. This will also reduce your

electricity bill!

13. Get a rug. Carpets and rugs keep your house warm and your thermostat low.

14. Don’t rinse. If you use a dishwasher, stop rinsing your plates before you run the machine.

15. Choose a better diaper option. Swaddle your baby in cloth diapers or a new,

environmentally responsible disposable brand.

16. Shovel snow manually. Avoid the noisy, exhaust-churning snow blower and get some


17. Use cardboard matches. They don’t require any petroleum, unlike plastic gas-filled


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*C. Things you can do outside your house *

1. Shop local. Supporting neighbourhood businesses keeps people employed and helps

prevent trucks from driving far distances.

2. Shop Smart—plan meals, use shopping lists and avoid impulse buys. Don’t succumb to

marketing tricks that lead you to buy more food than you need, particularly for perishable

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How you can help in saving the world?

items. Though these may be less expensive per ounce, they can be more expensive

overall if much of that food is discarded.

3. Buy Funny Fruit—many fruits and vegetables are thrown out because their size, shape, or

color are not “right”. Buying these perfectly good funny fruit, at the farmer’s market or

elsewhere, utilizes food that might otherwise go to waste.

4. When you go to a restaurant and are ordering seafood always ask: “Do you serve

sustainable seafood?” Let your favorite businesses know that ocean-friendly seafood’s on

your shopping list.

5. Shop only for sustainable seafood. There are now many apps like this one that will tell you what is safe to consume.

6. Bike, walk or take public transport. Save the car trips for when you’ve got a big group.

7. Use a refillable water bottle and coffee cup. Cut down on waste and maybe even save

money at the coffee shop.

8. Bring your own bag when you shop. Pass on the plastic bag and start carrying your own

reusable totes.

9. Take fewer napkins. You don’t need a handful of napkins to eat your takeout. Take just

what you need.

10. Shop vintage. Brand-new isn’t necessarily best. See what you can repurpose from

second-hand shops.

11. Maintain your car. A well-tuned car will emit fewer toxic fumes.

12. Donate what you don’t use. Local charities will give your gently used clothes, books and

furniture a new life.

13. Vaccinate yourself and your kids. Protecting your family from disease also aids public


14. Take advantage of your right to elect the leaders in your country and local community.

SOURCE: Sustainable development goals. The lazy person’s guide to saving the world.

Available online at http://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/

(accessed on November 21, 2016). * *

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*About Editors *

Subhash Bhore, PhD: Subhash completed his BSc (Botany) and MSc

(Botany) degrees education at University of Pune, India. Immediately

after completing his MSc (May 1996), he got an opportunity to work at

‘Biochemical Engineering Department’ and ‘Plant Tissue Culture Pilot

Plant’ of the National Chemical Laboratory, Pune, India. In June 2000,

he received a Doctoral Fellowship (GRA) to pursue a PhD Degree in

Molecular Genetics at the National University of Malaysia (UKM). In

2004, he was appointed as Senior Research Officer at Melaka Institute of

Biotechnology (MIB), a research wing of Melaka Biotechnology

Corporation, Malaysia. Based on his performance, in April 2005, he was

promoted as ‘Principal Investigator & Head of R&D Department’ at MIB, Malaysia. In 2008, he

was invited by the AIMST University as a ‘Visiting Faculty’ for their Department of

Biotechnology and now serving as a Senior Associate Professor. In 2009, he was nominated for

the AASIO (Association of Agricultural Scientists of Indian Origin) Young Scientist Award. He

has published more than 47 peer-reviewed articles, 5 books, and submitted more than 11,900

DNA sequences in Gene Bank, and got more than 10 awards/fellowships. As of May 2016, he

has supervised more than 67 students including postgraduates, undergraduates and industrial

trainees. He is actively involved in research as well as teaching and advising of postgraduate and

undergraduate students. You may contact him using email, [email protected] or

[email protected]

Kasi Marimuthu, PhD: Marimuthu accomplished his BSc (Zoology);






Biotechnology/ Zoology Interdisciplinary) degree education at

Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tamilnadu, India. In 2003 he

joined as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at School of Biological Sciences,

University Science Malaysia, Penang for 2 years. Presently, he is

appointed as a Professor in the Department of Biotechnology AIMST

University, Malaysia. He teaches Aquaculture, Biostatistics, Research

Methodology, Biology of Invertebrates and Vertebrates courses for undergraduate biotechnology

programme. He is specialized in fish reproduction and breeding, larval rearing, hatchery

management, fish immunology and aquatic toxicology related research. He has published more

than 95 research publication in fisheries and aquaculture in various reputed and indexed journals.

He has participated in more than 35 local and international conferences, seminars, and

workshops. He has been appointed as an external examiner for six Indian Universities

(Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Annamalai University, Bharathiyar University,

Bharathidasan University, Madras University, and Priest University) Tamilnadu, India. He is

also currently serving as a Deputy Vice chancellor for Academic and International Affairs at

AIMST University. You may contact him at [email protected]

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*Focus on Environment *

*Challenges and Perspectives for Sustainable Development *

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*Published by AIMST University *


Focus on Environment

This book is the Proceedings of the ‘National Seminar on Sustainable Environment and Health 2016’ & ‘World Environment Day-2016 (WED-2016)’ events held on the campus of AIMST University, Kedah, Malaysia. ISBN: 978-967-14475-0-5 (Print version); eISBN: 978-967-14475-1-2 (e-Book version) Editors Subhash Bhore & K. Marimuthu

  • Author: Dr. Subhash Bhore
  • Published: 2016-12-23 16:05:28
  • Words: 55307
Focus on Environment Focus on Environment