Wednesday July 25, 2012, The Star
He expressed hope that government departments and agencies, higher education institutions and schools will also stop using such products which are known to be harmful to the environment.
Speaking at the launch of a health awareness campaign in conjunction with a buka puasa function and Terawih prayers at Istana Arau here on Monday night, the Raja Muda suggested that biodegradable or paper items be used instead.
â€śDeveloped countries don't use polystyrene products,â€ť he noted in a Bernama report.
Studies have shown the ill-effects of styrene and benzene found in polystyrene products on the nervous system and environment.
Environmental advocacy group EcoKnights, meanwhile, has lauded the Raja Muda's stand and hoped it will set a precedent for other official events.
â€śThis is an example for others. When demand drops, production of these containers will be affected,â€ť said the group's founder and president Yasmin Rasyid.
She agreed with the Raja Muda's suggestion to use biodegradable items.
â€śThis should especially be done at events to raise awareness on health,â€ť she said.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian Nature Society said the move would help conservation efforts.
â€śAs a developing nation, we need to inspire and promote the phasing out of hazardous materials while improving our lifestyles by not sacrificing our environment,â€ť said a spokesman in an email.