Rainbow Warrior leaves Dumai

Press release - November 18, 2007
The Greenpeace flagship, Rainbow Warrior, has left Dumai, Indonesia´s largest palm oil export port and now plans to head for Jakarta to take her message on preventing deforestation and climate change to Indonesia´s leaders, before heading to Bali for the UN climate conference in just over two weeks time.

Yesterday the Rainbow Warrior was forced aside by tugboats while blocking the palm oil tanker MT Westama from leaving the port of Dumai, Riau Province, Sumatra, Indonesia.

The Rainbow Warrior was taking action to expose the disastrous effects the palm oil industry is having on Indonesia's peatlands, forests and the global climate.

Greenpeace's non-violent action against the export of palm oil has gained high level political attention in Jakarta with Indonesia´s President, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, calling a meeting with the Ministers for Environment and Agriculture, and the Secretary General to the Minster of Forestry, to discuss the Rainbow Warrior´s activities and Greenpeace´s call for a moratorium on deforestation and peatland conversion.

Indonesia´s Forest Minister, MS Kaban, will meet with Greenpeace in Jakarta on Tuesday, November 20, to discuss the issue.

The conversion of forests and peatlands for palm oil plantations is a major driver of deforestation in Indonesia. The carbon released by these activities make Indonesia the third largest greenhouse gas emitter on the planet.

"We want the Indonesian Government to implement an immediate moratorium on forest conversion and peatland destruction in order to prevent dangerous climate change," said Bustar Maitar Greenpeace South East Asia's forests spokesperson. "Unless something urgent is done to protect these areas Indonesia´s contribution to dangerous climate change will only increase."

"The findings of a report released yesterday by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a stark warning that all Governments need to take strong action to protect the global climate," Mr Maitar said. "Indonesia´s forests have the potential of being an important part of a global solution on climate change. However, if forest conversion is allowed to continue, Indonesia´s forests will instead be a significant part of the problem."

"We also call on the international community to assist Indonesia in ensuring that efforts to stop deforestation succeed," he said.

Yesterday in Valencia, Spain, the IPCC released its Fourth Assessment Synthesis report, which sums up the key points from the three major reports published this year on climate change science, its impacts and the mitigation options. It will be the key reference document for policymakers in the coming years.

At the upcoming climate meeting in Bali, Greenpeace will be calling for an agreement to negotiate a new funding mechanism to help achieve a drastic reduction in deforestation. The resulting reductions in emissions must be additional to cuts in emissions from burning fossil fuels.

Other contacts: On board the Rainbow Warrior: Sue Connor: Greenpeace International Forest Campaigner +62 813 176 536 44 Bustar Maitar, Greenpeace Indonesia Forest Campaigner: +62 813 446661 35 Tiy Chung: Greenpeace communications officer: +61 409 604 010 Rainbow Warrior phone number: +31 653 464 289 In Jakarta: Chris Nustaya: Greenpeace Indonesia communications officer: +62 812107 8050