Monday, June 16, 2008

And fieldwork begins

The bus was late for 2 hours yesterday but we managed to arrive at Cameron at around 9.15am this morning. Mr C picked us up and we went for breakfast. Gave me a few updates regarding subsidies and TV 3 reporting that somebody was secretly clearing land in the forest in CH! I wonder where I can get a copy of that. There is a department of environment that is supposed to monitor these things but I wonder if I can get them to talk to me. We also talked about soil conservation method - they have an officer in charge of soil conservation and there are vegetative and other methods. interesting. but they are giving away the grass for free because nobody wants! "only when you have to pay for it then people want?" This grass has a 3 meter root that is meant to be planted along the contours of the land to intercept runoff and hold the soil together. Apparently last time the older farms that uses terracing has better drains that is much more effective in terms of soil conservation but then the new concept in the 70s-80s which is to level the land to have a flat ground to plant more, that created a lot of problems. Also it is now technically illegal to use any heavy machinery on anything above 1000m in the whole of Malaysia. But how much of it is enforced? "Being on the take" is still a big issue. We talked about tracing and how the tagging might be a problem if the big boys tag for the small boys and then the small boys say they wanna tag what. So who bears the resposibility? In fact, "making things pass" when demand is short is something both wholesaler and farmers say happens even in the strict condition that is Singapore.

I gave Mr C a list of the farms I spotted at the wholesale center and if he doesn't know them then I will check with Mr Ch.

Interestingly my apartment situation has improved. I get 1 month in my first apartment and only for the last 2 weeks then we need to move. That will be convenient. I tried to get in touch with COP but then sms no reply. Maybe I should call.

I really need to be more prompt with my field notes. I'm sure there are other things I forgot about the chat this morning. crap!

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