1 Tahrcountry Musings: Indonesia reneges on promises to international community

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Indonesia reneges on promises to international community

Indonesia had assured the recently concluded World Conservation Congress in Barcelona, its commitment to protect the natural forests and ecosystems of Sumatra in deference to the wishes of the international conservation community. But the words ring hollow now. Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) has built a 45-kilometre, logging highway through prime Sumatran tiger habitat. The road passes protected areas, proposed protected areas and deep peat areas. Draining or disturbance of the deep peat soils under forests results in massive emissions which has global significance. The clearing in the past has disturbed wildlife and resulted in increased human – wildlife conflicts.
If Indonesia waits for some more time there is a golden opportunity coming up. The financial mechanisms for avoided deforestation which is on the anvil could result in countries like Indonesia getting more from investors for forest preservation than forest destruction. Indonesian environmentalists have appealed to current and future buyers and investors of APP not to have any business with APP. Staples Inc of United States, Ricoh and Fuji Xerox Groups of Japan, Metro Group of Germany and Woolworths of Australia have already heeded to their call.

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