Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Forestry minister: developed nations indisposed to give incentives

Personal Comment: The amazing audacity of the Indonesian government. They want other countries to pay them not to allow their forest to be cut down. If the past is anything to go by, any such money will 'disappear and the forests will still be logged.

Forestry minister: developed nations indisposed to give incentives

Source: Antara News - August 27, 2007

Forestry Minister MS Kaban said up to now developed countries had been
indisposed to give incentives to the Indonesian government for its efforts
to reduce forest damage. Regions which had maintained national parks,
protected forests and converted areas had so far not received any
incentives, the minister said at a national workshop on forestry and
climate change in Indonesia here Monday.

Meanwhile, he said, developed countries had also given no response to the
government`s efforts to reduce the felling production quota from 21 million
cubic meters to 9.1 million cubic meters per year.

"We also get nothing for our efforts to rehabilitate critical forests and
land. Since 2003, about two million hectares of critical forests and land
have been greened," he said. He thus considered important that developing
countries which have tropical areas and developed ones which are
responsible for carbon emission reach an agreement on a mechanism to
calculate incentives.

According to the minister, developing and developed countries were still
trying to arrive at the same perception on the matter.

"We are trying to agree on the developed countries` concept on efforts to
reduce emissions but we also want incentives for our environment
conservation services," he said. He said only two foreign companies from
Britain and Switzerland had so far made observations on possible provision
of incentives for efforts to reduce carbon emissions due to deforestation
and forest degradation in Indonesia.

Kaban said in the upcoming international conference on climate change in
December in Bali, Indonesia hoped the participants to the event would reach
an agreement on incentives for efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

The minister pointed out that 48 million Indonesian people live and depend
on forests which cover 120.35 million hectares of land, 24 million hectares
of which serve as national parks. Thus, he said, the function of forests in
Indonesia is not only viewed from the environmental but economic and social
aspects as well.

The minister also disclosed that since the past 35-40 years, forest areas
in Indonesia has shrunk by about 24 million hectares due to the growing
population and national economy. (*)