Do you know what is LA21?


Local Agenda 21 (LA21) is a programme to forge partnerships between local authorities (such as District Councils, Municipal Councils, City Councils and City Halls) and the communities they serve to work together to plan and care for their surroundings towards sustainable development.

Through LA21, local communities will, together with their local authority, identify and analyse local sustainable development issues, and then formulate and implement action plans to address them.

LA21 adopts a “bottom up” approach. That is to say the local community themselves are involved from the very initial planning stage.


Sustainable development has been a widely debated topic and has enjoyed many interpretations. For simplicity, we would like to suggest the following descriptions which have been widely referred to:

  • Sustainable development is “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” -Our Common Future, the final report of the World Commission on Environment and Development (also known as the Brudtland Commission), 1987.
  • Sustainable development is a process of bringing Economic Development, Community Development and Ecological Development to balance with each other–The Local Agenda 21 Planning Guide, ICLEI

The objectives of the Local Agenda 21 (LA21) Pilot Project are:

* To broach sustainable development issues and LA 21 with local communities and private sector.
* To emphasize that achieving sustainable development is the responsibility of all stakeholders.
* To formulate LA 21 Strategies and Action Plans to address local sustainable development issues.
* To actualize LA21 Action Plans through sustainable development programs and activities.
* To replicate the LA21 process in other interested local authorities in the country.

It is important for the LA21 should manifest itself through physical programs for their benefits

For its benefits to be appreciated by the community and other stakeholders, programs such as LA21 should manifest itself through tangible programs and activities that improve their quality of life. For example, programs could be developed to address the following issues:

* Pollution
* Resource management
* Recycling
* Cleanliness
* Social development
* Social integration

In mid-1999, the Ministry of Housing and Local Government invited applications from all local authorities to participate in the LA21 Pilot Project. The application were scrutinized and the following local authorities were selected based upon their capacity and interest shown:

* Miri Municipal Council
* Petaling Jaya Municipal Council
* Kerian District Council
* Kuantan Municipal Council

The selection also represents a wide cross section of local authorities in the country in terms of size and location, for example:

  • Miri Municipal Council represents local authorities in Sabah and Sarawak which operate slightly differently from those in peninsular Malaysia.

  • Petaling Jaya Municipal Council represents the central region of peninsular Malaysia and also large local authorities with complex issues.

  • Kerian District Council is in the northern part of peninsular Malaysia and represents District Councils which make up the majority of local authorities in the country.

  • Kuantan Municipal Council represents local authorities from the East Coast and medium sized local authorities.


The LA21 Pilot Project is supported by UNDP through:

  • Budget allocation funding for LA21 seminars and workshops to be held at the selected local authorities.
  • Budget allocation for stakeholder training
  • Budget allocation for national awareness raising
  • Budget allocation for national LA21 Seminars

UNDP has also appointed a team of full time consultants to assist the Ministry of Housing and Local Government (MHLG) as well as the pilot local authorities implement LA21. The consultant team comprises:

* Project Coordinator, situated at MHLG, for overall project coordination.
* Communications Consultant, situated at MHLG, for education and awareness raising.
* 4 Community Liaison Consultants at each pilot local authority to coordinate LA21 at the local level and to facilitate communication between the local authority and the community.

The most important mechanism in the LA21 Pilot Project is the LA21 Committee set up at each pilot site. This committee is chaired by the Mayor of the local authority and comprises representatives from the local community, businesses and relevant government agencies.

Typically, the membership of an LA21 Committee comprises:

* Mayor (as Chairman)
* LA21 Officer from the local authority (as Secretary)
* Community Liaison Consultant

and representatives from:

* Local Community Based Organizations (CBO)
* Local Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO)
* Local businesses and industries
* Relevant departments of the local authority
* Relevant government agencies outside the local authority
* Other local authorities
* Project Coordinator and Communications Consultant when necessary

To facilitate work, several Workgroups are also formed to focus on specific areas of concern and to make recommendations to the LA21 Committee. Below is an illustration of the organizational structure in Kerian:

::: Roles of an LA21 Committees

An LA21 Committee, which comprises representatives from the local community, private sector and local authority, has the following functions:

* To review local sustainable development issues with the community
* To raise awareness about local sustainable development issues
* To formulate LA21 Action Plans jointly with the community
* To promote cooperation between stakeholders
* To establish sustainable development indicators
* To publicize the results of the LA21 partnership
* To implement the LA21 Action Plans
* To monitor indicators and establish triggers
* To popularize LA21 Action Plan activities and development among the local community

::: National Level Committees

At the national level, the Chair of each LA21 Committee reports to a Technical Coordination Committee. This committee is Chaired by the National Project Director, who is the Director General of the Department of Local Authority, Ministry of Housing and Local Government (MHLG).

The Technical Coordination Committee in turn reports to the National Steering Committee chaired by the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) of the Prime Minister’s Department.

As an individual, you could benefit from LA21 by:

  • Your views being taken into account in the planning and implementation of LA21 programs to improve the quality of life in your town
  • Your local authority will be more sensitive and effective to your needs
  • A more conducive environment and a higher quality of life
  • Having more pride and ownership over your surroundings

As an organization or establishment, you could benefit through:

  • Project the image of your organization as a good corporate citizen sensitive to the needs of the community
  • Increased effectiveness through co-operation with other stakeholders in you community
  • Opportunity to participate in the planning and development in your surroundings with the local authority
  • Opportunity to give valuable input to policies and practices that will influence your surroundings and the community’s quality of life
  • Opportunity to serve the community

As a representative of the government, you could benefit through:

* Increased understanding and cooperation between government and the community
* Increased community support and participation in programs that will benefit all
* Further improve the image of your department as one that practices good governance through public participation, transparency, consensus building, effectiveness and efficiency, accountability and strategic vision

[size=100]::: What can you do.[/size]

* Join a social or environmental organization, program or activity in your area
* Contact your local authority and join their environmental and social programs
* Encourage children and friends to care for the environment

If you live in an LA21 pilot site such as Miri, Petaling Jaya, Kerian or Kuantan, please contact your local authority to participate in the LA 21 Pilot Project there.

I recommend you guys join this group and see how other state run LA21.If you want to register as one of the LA21 Miri’s working group member,please contact

DYG SITI NURBAYA BTE AWG KIPLI/Pn. Molly at direct line 085 438940

Hi psim,

For your information, I have move this topic (previously in Miricom Lounge forum) into the Socializing forum. This is to allow better organization & exposure of your topic in the right forum targetted to the right people. Hope you understand, and thanks for the very educational information.

apa yg LA21 buat, dah dilakukan oleh jabatan alam sekitar di dalam menghasilkan report EIA (enviromental Impact Assessment).tp…disebabkan isu politik berkait rapat dengan hal ini, so kebanyakkan diabaikan…