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Jakarta Post

DNA technology could help save endangered forest species

  • Jonathan Wootliff

  /   Tue, September 15 2009   /  12:11 pm

New technology is providing some hope to those battling to stop Indonesia's massively devastating and hugely costly illegal logging activity. In recent years, unlawful forest destruction has resulted in undermining the rule of law and deprived the state of substantial revenues. The World Bank estimates the illicit practice costs more than a staggering Rp 100 trillion each year. It has serious economic and social implications for the poor and disadvantaged and the threat to ecosystems and biodiversity is enormous, with very little long-term advantage for anyone other than those who are responsible for the plunder and smuggling of timber. There is no doubt that the use of endangered wood for elegant furniture, timber-lined walls and hardwood floors in the West is fueling this appalling trade, which is threatening to wipe out whole species of trees and precious rainforests, a...