Yayasan Pusaka Bentala Rakyat recorded that by the end of 2022, there was deforestation covering an area of 19,426 hectares in Papua, which occurred as a result of logging and palm oil plantation business activities. “According to our year-end records in 2022, deforestation in Papua was observed at 19,426 hectares. It all comes from logging business activities and oil palm plantations,” said Franky Samperante, executive director of the Pusaka, in a press release on 21 March 2023.
Pusaka also released the latest facts, Papua’s forests lost 413 hectares in just two months, January to February 2023. This is strongly suspected to be due to the presence of oil palm plantation companies. Based on field data, three palm oil companies have carried out this deforestation: PT Inti Kebun Sejahtera and PT Inti Kebun Sawit in Sorong district, and PT Subur Karunia Raya in Teluk Bintuni district. These three companies are registered as companies that have had their concession licenses revoked by the Minister of Environment and Forestry (LHK) but the companies are still active.
“We are of the view that forests are not only timber and land sources for commercial commodities but have a diversity of ecological, socio-cultural, economic, and so on functions, which should be fully organised and managed adequately”, said Samperante in the press release. “The government has intensified serious and strong law enforcement measures on company permits that have been revoked in forest areas,” he said.
Based on the annexe to the decision of the Minister of Environment and Forestry Decree Number SK.01/MENLHK/SETJEN/KUM.1/1/2022 concerning the Revocation of Forest Area Concession Permits, 48 forestry concession companies were registered that had extensive license revocations concession 1,063,100 hectares. So far no information has been submitted about the evaluation, law enforcement, and sanctions of the company in question. Instead, efforts were found to grant new permits in the case of PT Sorong Global Lestari in Sorong Regency, and deforestation activities for the expansion of plantation areas.
He urged states and corporations to respect and protect the existence and activities of environmental human rights defenders, those fighting at the grassroots and on the front lines forest rangers, as well as activists defending and fighting for human rights and the environment.
The Indonesian government has ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement. Among other things, it requires countries to take preventive measures to anticipate, prevent or minimize the causes of climate change and mitigate the adverse impacts it produces and reduce house gas emissions glass.
The Minister of Environment and Forestry (LHK) has decreed Decree Number SK.168/MENLHK/PKTL/PLA.1/2/2022 concerning Indonesia’s Forest and Other Land Use Net Carbon Sink (FOLU Net Sink) 2030 Operation Plan for climate change control, including goals to reduce the rate of deforestation and forest degradation.