British Colonial Administration’s Policy and Political Actions towards Natural Environment: The Case of the Malay Peninsula
This paper discusses the origins of politics of the environment in Malaysia. It uses a historical method together with the conceptual definitions of ‘natural environment intervention’ and ‘mercantilism state’ as the focus of analysis to examine the origins of the politics in Malaysia. In the analysis, focus is given to evidence of British colonial administration’s policy and political actions towards natural environment in the Malay Peninsula from pre-independence until 1957. Three issue areas of natural environment namely land, mineral and forests are discussed in the context of the state policy and political actions. In each the issue-area, environmental issues are also discussed to show the merit of environmental problem in the era of the administration. This paper argues that politics on the environment in Malaysia is originated from the way in which natural environment was excessively interfered by the British colonial administration. This politics was performed in two ways: policy and politics in domestics and externals.
Keywords: Environmental Politics, Malaysia, Natural Environment
PhD Candidate, Institute of Law, Politics and Justice, Keele University