Illegal logging continues in China and Asia Pulp and Paper is held responsible

Press release - 2005-05-25
Greenpeace today published "The Investigative Report into Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) in South China's Hainan Province (1)," and condemned the company for logging natural forests. Greenpeace has identified a raw material shortfall for the newly founded Jinhai Pulp & Paper Plant. Greenpeace is calling for APP to guarantee the protection of China's natural forests, to fully comply with the legal procedures and authorizations as required by the Chinese government, and to develop a time-bound action plan to implement these commitments.

Workers are transporting the logged trees.

Outside Jinhai Pulp Paper Plant, a truck of timbers from natural forest is waiting for selling to Jinhai plant.

Illegal logged timbers that have been confiscated by Songtao Reservoir Administration

Destroyed water source forest in Nan Jialu Village, Danzhou City, Hainan

Logged trees are left on Hainan Danzhou City Road, and waiting for transporting to Jinhai Pulp Paper Plant.

Worker’s logging trees on protected road in Hainan Danzhou City Road.

The investigation report reveals that due to a shortfall in the supply of raw materials, APP purchased timber across the province including timber logged in natural forests. APP has only established 100,000 mu of eucalyptus plantations in Hainan which is a vast shortfall of the necessary amount required to feed the needs of the new mill.

The State Forestry Administration verified in March 2005 that APP destroyed more than 2,700 mu of natural forests in Yunnan(2). According to Article 39 of the Chinese Forest Law, APP can be punished for logging natural forests.

Greenpeace Forest campaigner Liu Bing said, "Commencing APP's operations in Hainan without a guaranteed environmentally sustainable supply is extremely irresponsible and should be rectified immediately. APP's purchase of timber in Hainan is deforestation in a disguised form. APP is trying to shirk its legal responsibilities".

Greenpeace also published the video tape taken in the course of the investigations in Hainan. Several interviewees (including local farmers and governmental officials) have provided evidence that APP destroyed natural forests while ignoring farmers' interests.

The pulp-forest-paper integration program is one of the key programs that the Chinese government has developed to meet the huge demands for the paper industry. According to Liu Bing, "Greenpeace supports sustainable development through the Hainan Provincial Governments' pulp-forest-paper integration program as long as the companies involved comply with Chinese law and do not destroy natural forests."

Greenpeace is calling for:

  • The central government to establish a special team to investigate APP's operations in all its project related provinces in China and to stop and punish any illegal activities.
  • APP to guarantee the protection of China's natural forests and ensure fair benefit-sharing with local people
  • APP to fully comply with the legal procedures and authorizations as required by the Chinese government.
  • APP must develop a time-bound action plan to implement these commitments

Notes:

(1) Investigation on APP's Hainan Project at: http://www.greenpeace.org/eastasia/publications/reports/forests/2005/APP_Hainan_Project/

(2) SFA (January 2005), Notification Regarding the Problems in the Plantations of Sinar Mas (China) Investment Company in Yunnan Province.

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