‘Endangered forest species’ visit Environment Ministry

Greenpeace calls for action on the environment

Berita - 8 April, 2010
Following President Yudyhono’s press statement on the need for greater action on environmental protection, ‘endangered forest species’ today visited the Ministry of the Environment to call on the government agency to “Enforce the law and protect the environment.”

‘beberapa spesies yang saat ini terancam kepunahan’ mengunjungi Kementerian Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia untuk mendesak pemerintah menegakkan hukum dan melindungi lingkungan.

The forest species were Greenpeace activists representing orangutans, tigers and elephants-animals from Indonesian forests who have already lost their habitats and need protection.  As part of the call, the activists delivered dossiers of companies committing environmental destruction in Sumatra, Kalimantan and Papua where action to save the country's forests is most critical.

"Greenpeace welcomes the President SBY's call for Greenpeace to work together with the government to save the Indonesian environment. The Ministry for the Environment has the mandate and the power to take action against those who destroy forests and peatlands.  They must turn President SBY's words into action by investigating environmental destruction and taking urgent and necessary action.  We are here to help the Minstry take this action by providing evidence of the oil palm and pulp and paper industries destroying forests and peatlands to aid the Ministry's investigations," said Yuyun Indradi, Greenpeace Southeast Asia Forest Political Advisor.

"As a start, the Ministry, together with President SBY, must instigate an immediate moratorium on deforestation and mandate the full protection of peatlands.  This is the most important step that can truly protect Indonesia's environment and achieve the President's commitment to reduce Indonesia's emissions by 41% by 2020," continued Indradi.

Greenpeace is asking for full peatland protection and an immediate moratorium on deforestation as it would provide the space for the implementation of longer term measures for forest protection supported by international donors.  Such a moratorium would also drive investment into other areas for instance yield improvements on existing plantation areas, especially those owned by smallholders.  Furthermore, it will kickstart a planning process with local communities to identify non-forest, degraded areas where the palm oil industry could potentially expand. 

A recently-passed environmental law on Environmental Protection and Management gives the Ministry of Environment a greater mandate to implement environmental audit, law enforcement, investigation, and administrative prosecution.  Greenpeace sees their visit to the Ministry's office not just as an expression of concern regarding continuing forest destruction in Indonesia by a few giant companies, but also as a way of supporting the agency to execute the mandate in the new environmental law.

"We take SBY's call for partnership very seriously and call on his Ministries to do the same. In order to truly develop a model of forest protection and welfare for the Indonesian people President SBY and the Ministry for the Environment must stop the destruction now," concluded Indradi.