Penang island in Malaysia is using drones to monitor illegal deforestation, Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has revealed.

The Penang Island City Council already uses drones to watch for illegal land clearing, and plans to expand its use to Bukit Laksamana – a large hill covered in tropical foliage. “We will monitor the hill with drones from December,” he said.

Illegal deforestation was reported on the hill earlier this year, with local residents complaining of landslides and mudslides as a result.

The city council will also use CCTV cameras to monitor the hills from next year. “A total of 22 locations have been identified for the CCTV sites,” he said.

The central government intends to use drones for monitoring floods. The Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry has tested one earlier this year.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s Communications and Multimedia Minister has suggested that the country use drones to deliver flood relief, after witnessing Switzerland’s drone delivery trials.

Image above by Sam Beebe; licensed under CC BY 2.0.