The Palm Oil Industry Does Not Threaten Forest Conservation

The Palm Oil Industry Does Not Threaten Forest Conservation

Image source: http://alert-conservation.org/s/global-palm-oil-production-1991-2011.jpg

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the Indonesian palm oil industry would not threaten Indonesia-Norway forest conservation agreement through REDD + mechanism because the government has its own policy to harmonize the two things.

This was stated by President Yudhoyono in a press conference after the opening of Climate and Forest Conference at Holmenkollen Park Hotel Rica, Oslo, Norway, on Thursday.

REDD + is a program, where developing countries with forests take forest conservation measures and on the other hand developed countries provide incentives in the form of funds to help those developing countries

"We already have our own plans to fulfill our part in the cooperation of Indonesia and Norway, in reducing our emissions from deforestation and forest degradation," he said.

The President explained that the Government of Indonesia is committed if the sustainability of the palm oil industry will not cover protected forest areas.

Indonesia, the president said, would not stop oil palm production, but would not blindly open new forests.

Head of State explained that Indonesia has a policy to use degraded land for the continuation of the palm oil industry.

"We will control the continuity of the business and the industry, so it will not disturb the forests that must be protected so I am happy to announce that we have a lot of land called degraded land that can be used for our agricultural business, including oil palm industry and plantations, "he said.

The Head of State further emphasized that Indonesia has specifically identified what is Indonesia's obligation in the forest conservation agreement with Norway, such as moratorium on peat land permits, avoiding deforestation, and preventing forest fires.

He also said that to implement the agreement on forest conservation with Norway, the central government will involve all existing elements, both local government and local communities.

On Wednesday (26/5) the Government of Indonesia and Norway agreed on a "Letter of Intent" worth US $ 1 billion for cooperation on reducing carbon emissions from deforestation and forest destruction.The agreement states that Indonesia will keep its forests within a certain area according to the calculations.

Minister of Forestry Zulkifli Hassan who accompanied the President at the conference said that according to the LoI with Norway it is a certain area that has been agreed should not be converted into agricultural or other areas.

He explained that for the agriculture needs of Indonesia will give priority to abandoned lands. He said there were about 6.7 million hectares of critical land that could be utilized.

Related to the involvement of the local government, Riau Governor Rusli Zainal, one of three governors who participated in the President's working visit to Norway said Riau's commitment to nature conservation. He explained about the special areas in Riau which has become a conservation forest. (ant / roc)

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