Highest deforestation rate in Indonesia (CCD-Coalition / olyecology)

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CCD-Coalition 190 – Earth’s Tree News



Already having the highest deforestation rate in the world, Indonesia’s Minister of Forestry announced the country would increase its harvest quota for natural timber for 2007 by 12 percent to 9.1 million cubic meters according to the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO).

ITTO said the target quota may actually be 12.4 million cubic meters (53 percent higher than 2006) for the year. In recent years Indonesia’s timber industry has shrunken dramatically due to declining forest cover. As a result, the wood processing industry has been plagued with over-capacity. The shortfall in legal wood supplies for processors in both Indonesia and Malaysia has driven widespread illegal logging in the country–more than 70 percent of logging in Indonesia is said to be illicit. Much of this harvesting has taken place in Borneo, Sumatra, and the Papua province of New Guinea where the bulk of Indonesia’s forest cover remains. Logging, combined with large-scale clearing for oil palm plantations and other forms of agriculture, caused the loss of around 3 million hectares (30,000 square kilometers) of forest in Indonesia for 2006, giving the country the world’s highest deforestation rate, well ahead of Brazil. Between 1990 and 2005 Indonesia lost more than 28 million hectares of forest, including 21.7 million hectares of virgin forest according to U.N. figures. http://news.mongabay.com/2007/0409-indonesia.html

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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