Friday, 12 February 2010

Tens of thousands hectares of forests in Muaraenim damaged

Tens of thousands hectares of forests in Muaraenim damaged

Friday, February 12, 2010 05:51 WIB | Environment |

Muaraenim, S Sumatra (ANTARA News) - Some 53,334 hectares of state conversion forests in the production forests of PT Musi Hutan Persada (PT MHP) in Muaraenim regency, South Sumatra, were heavily damaged by illegal logging activities.

"Already 70 pct of the forests in Muaraenim were seriously damaged, because of the 76,191 ha forests, only 30 percent remains intact or 22,857 ha," Ahmad Mirza of the Muaraenim forestry service said here Thursday.

Under forestry ministerial decree no 1775/Menhut/VIII/2001, forest management had been entrusted to the Muaraenim regency administration for development into a Special Bee Development Center.

He said the forest damage was caused by the stealing hundreds of cubics of pinus trees of the Inhutani.

"Now the forest is finished to have been cut by irresponsible people, but the Muaraenim police managed to seize 10 trucks loaded with logs, and arrested the 23 of the perpetrators" he added.

The police is currently interrogating five witnesses, but for the lack of evidence, the police had difficulties in naming illegal logging suspects. (*)