Ericsson and the Yayasan Diraja Sultan Mizan Foundation have entered into an agreement to preserve the Setiu wetlands ecosystem and cultural heritage. The Connected Setiu Wetlands initiative is the first project of this scale in Malaysia that combines ICT technologies with environmental preservation efforts. Wetlands critical to preserve in the fight against climate change as well as key driver of local economies. Smart sensors show it’s possible to enhance and accelerate preservation efforts.

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) and the Yayasan Diraja Sultan Mizan (YDSM) Foundation have entered into a partnership agreement to use Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to preserve the wetland ecosystem and cultural heritage in Setiu, a district in the state of Terengganu, Malaysia, using mobile broadband, Internet of Things, and cloud technologies.

Ericsson and YDSM, under this agreement will establish sustainable practices for agriculture, fisheries and ecotourism. Together with connectivity partner Celcom Axiata Berhad the partnership intends to explore five main areas - Mobile broadband for All, Connected Agriculture, Intelligent Fisheries, Enhanced Learning and Digital Ecotourism in order to provide sustainable solutions which the communities at Setiu can leverage for a positive economic, environmental and social impact.

Professor Dato’ Makhdzir Mardan, an advisor to YDSM said this collaboration further reaffirms the Foundation’s commitment to developing the state of Terengganu: ”Our foundation is focused on implementing solutions towards environmental conservation and protecting our cultural heritage in Terengganu. We see the value ICT can play in empowering the community in Setiu with education, soft skills training, and innovative solutions. Digitizing Setiu Wetlands will also put us on the map as tourist destination and allow us to share our culture and heritage with the world,” he said.

As part of the project, Ericsson together with their partners will

  • Provide high speed mobile broadband in the Setiu Wetlands area to enable the use of mobile applications, video streaming and Internet of Things applications to support the community, government and research efforts towards maintaining sustainable growth in the area.
  • Establish a remote water monitoring system for rivers, mangrove plantations and palm oil plantations to detect pollution or changes in the water quality that can affect the health of the flora and fauna in the area. The system aims to allow for early preventive action when pollution is detected as well as for early planning of preservation and sustainability policies.
  • Develop a mobile application for fishermen in order for them to access information such as weather forecasts, plankton grounds, wind changes and water temperature to ensure the most productive catch for the day. The system will also enable fishermen to connect with their peers using Person to Person, Application to Person and GPS messaging. The systems are aimed at increasing yield, ensuring safety and reducing time spent at sea.

Todd Ashton, Head of Ericsson Malaysia and Sri Lanka said “An initiative like this is testament to how mobility, broadband, and cloud can unleash untapped potential in Malaysia. This initiative will allow Setiu to leverage ICT to digitally transform communities and industries for enhanced day-to-day living and better productivity. At Ericsson we believe in the power of working with partners with a shared vision and are pleased to be working with YDSM. Ericsson is a leading advocate of Technology for Good and we want to ensure our technology is a force for positive change towards creating a Networked Society in Terengganu”.

Setiu Wetlands is the largest natural wetlands in the East Coast region of Peninsula Malaysia, located in the Setiu district in the state of Terengganu. It has unique freshwater, seawater and brackish water ecosystem as well as a 14 km lagoon.

In 2015 the government of Terengganu gazetted 400 hectares within 1,743 hectares of Setiu wetlands as a state park due to the biological diversity of the area, and made the decision to protect the natural environment, biodiversity, cultural and heritage values and enchance opportunities for ecotourism.

Yayasan Diraja Sultan Mizan (YDSM) has mandated the preservation of the Setiu wetlands ecosystem and cultural heritage and believe that this collaboration with Ericsson will be ensuring the sustainable development of Setiu Wetlands and its surrounding villages.

The first phase of work is due to commence in the last quarter of 2016. The partnership will also explore opportunity to enhance learning and promote eco-tourism in later stages.

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