Thursday, 13 August 2009

Aceh lost forests worth $550m: Greenomics

Adianto P. Simamora , The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Wed, 08/12/2009

A study conducted by Greenomics Indonesia reveals that more than 200,000 hectares of forests were lost in Aceh during humanitarian missions to rebuild the province after the deadly 2004 tsunami disaster.

Most of this area was exploited illegally to supply wood to rebuild Aceh’s infrastructures and thousands of houses between 2006 and 2008, Greenomics says.

“It is the world’s fastest forest deforestation rate of any humanitarian missions. The reconstruction of Aceh was also the biggest user of illegal timbers of any humanitarian missions,” Greenomics executive director Elfian Effendi told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday.

The illegal logging was largely carried out by national and local contractors who worked for foreign projects, Elfian said.

The study shows that the loss of 200,329 hectares of forests meant Aceh had suffered a potential loss in annual income of US$551.3 million from forestry carbon trade.