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  • Published: Nov 29th, 2010
  • Category: Asia
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Indonesia’s forest protection plan at risk, says report

| Sourced From News.mongabay |

Industrial interests are threatening to undermine Norway’s billion dollar partnership with Indonesia, potentially turning the forest conservation deal into a scheme that subsidizes conversion of rainforests and peatlands for oil palm and pulp and paper plantations, logging concessions, and energy production, claims a new report from Greenpeace.

The report, Protection Money [PDF], argues that the forestry and energy sectors are working to influence Indonesia’s national REDD strategy to continue on a business-as-usual expansion model.

“Expansion plans show that these sectors intend to utilize the Indonesian government’s ambiguous definitions of forests and degraded land to hijack the funds and use them to subsidize ongoing conversion of natural forests to plantations,” said Greenpeace in a statement.

The report cites data from “various ministries economic development plans” indicating that at least 63 million hectares of land are slated to be brought into industrial production by 2030, including 28 million ha of timber plantations; 9 million ha of estate crops, including oil palm; 13 million ha of forest land for agriculture; 9 million ha of biofuel plantations; and 4 million ha of mining concessions. The green group says the planned expansionas currently designedcould lead to the loss of 40 percent of Indonesias remaining natural forest and degradation of 80 percent of its peatlands. The government aims to triple pulp and paper production by 2025 and more than double palm oil production by 2020, according to the report.

But Greenpeace says government figures also suggest the production goals can be achieved without further deforestation provided productivity improves.

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