Greenpeace: Gov’t auction of Indonesian forests is scandalous

Feature story - January 24, 2007
Greenpeace denounced the Indonesian Forestry Ministry’s latest plans of auctioning off old forest concession permits as scandalous, stressing that the move is no different from selling off the country’s future. Under a banner stating “Indonesia’s Forests on Sale” and a map of forest areas to be auctioned, Greenpeace activists dressed as rich entrepreneurs threw sacks of money at activists dressed as Forestry officials.

Greenpeace today denounced the Indonesia Forestry Ministry`s latest plans of Auctioning off old forest concession permits as scandalous, Stressing that the move is no Different from selling off the country`s future. Under a banner stating "Indonesia`s Forests on sale" and a map of forest areas to be auctioned, Greenpeace activists dressed as rich entrepreneurs threw sacks of money at activists dressed as Forests officials.

Greenpeace today denounced the Indonesia Forestry Ministry`s latest plans of Auctioning off old forest concession permits as scandalous, Stressing that the move is no Different from selling off the country`s future.

Greenpeace today denounced the Indonesia Forestry Ministry`s latest plans of Auctioning off old forest concession permits as scandalous, Stressing that the move is no Different from selling off the country`s future. Under a banner stating "Indonesia`s Forests on sale" and a map of forest areas to be auctioned, Greenpeace activists dressed as rich entrepreneurs threw sacks of money at activists dressed as Forests officials.

Under a banner stating "Indonesia`s Forests on sale" and a map of forest areas to be auctioned, Greenpeace activists dressed as rich entrepreneurs threw sacks of money at activists dressed as Forests officials. Greenpeace denounced the Indonesia Forestry Ministry`s latest plans of Auctioning off old forest concession permits as scandalous, Stressing that the move is no Different from selling off the country`s future.

"More than one million hectares of forest lands or twice the size of Bali island will be offered on the chopping block. Instead of taking drastic measures to reverse the decimation of our remaining forests, the Forest Ministry is hell bent on issuing new permits to the highest bidders. Auctioning off our forests is like selling off our future!" said Hapsoro, Forest Campaigner of Greenpeace Southeast Asia.

Within the next 10 days, a total of 1.063.418 hectares of forest area in Indonesia is scheduled to be auctioned off by the Department of Forestry to interested bidders in 16 locations across Indonesia, including forest lands in Papua (2), West Kalimantan (2), East Kalimantan (6), Central Kalimantan (3), Central Sulawesi (1), Central Maluku (1), and Jambi - South Sumatra (1). 1

In Papua, the areas up for government auction are located in Asmat (153.000 ha) and Jayapura (134.000 ha). Besides auctioning off forest concessions, the Ministry also plans to sell the rights to 9 pulpwood plantations covering two locations in Riau, one location in Jambi, one location in East Kalimantan, and five locations in South Sumatra.

In 2005, 2.8 million hectares of forests have already been destroyed, according to estimates from the Ministry of Forestry. In total, Indonesia has already lost more than 72% of its intact ancient forest areas.

"More than one million hectares of forest lands or twice the size of Bali island will be offered on the chopping block."

Hapsoro

Greenpeace Forest Campaigner

"The natural disasters that we have been experiencing these past years, especially the floods in Aceh, North Sumatra, and the forest fires in Riau are caused by rampant forest destruction and untrammeled land conversion but the government refuses to learn from its past mistakes and continues to put the lives of Indonesians in danger for a few million dollars more." added Hapsoro.

Notes: 1 for IUPHHK (Izin Usaha Pemanfaatan Hasil Hutan Kayu/ Permit to Utilize Forest base on timber/wood)

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