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Jakarta Post

Wasior flood blamed on deforestation

  • Nethy Dharma Somba and Markus Makmur

    The Jakarta Post

Jayapura/Timika   /   Sat, October 9 2010   /  10:27 am

The flash floods in Wasior, West Papua, that have so far claimed 110 lives, were caused by environmental damage in upstream areas, where much of the natural forests had been converted for mining and plantation purposes, activists said Friday.In a joint press conference, activists from the Green Indonesian Institute, Mining Advocacy Network (Jatam), the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi) and Pusaka called on the government to review policies on natural resource management to avert future ecological disasters.“The ecological disaster in Wasior should serve as serious warning for the government to reassess its policies on massive exploitation of natural resources,” Green Indonesia Institute chairman Chalid Muhammad said.“The policies must calculate the environmental impact of forestry activities,” he said.Data from the Institute shows the annual deforestation rate has hit ...