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Jakarta Post

Indonesia's forest concessionaires required to restore peatland

Indonesia's forest concessionaires required to restore peatland Haze emerges from fires ravaging peatland in Meranti Islands regency in Riau province. The government aims to restore 2.49 hectares of destroyed peatland. (Courtesy of Emergency Task Force for Forest Fire/Riau)
News Desk
Jakarta   ●   Sat, December 31, 2016

The Peatland Restoration Agency (BRG) will require forest concessionaires to restore 1.4 hectares of peatland starting in January 2017.

The move is set to affect 650,389 hectares managed by 36 forest concessionaires in five provinces, namely South Sumatra, Central Kalimantan, West Kalimantan, Riau and Jambi, BRG head Nazir Foead said.

“The areas to be restored are equivalent to 26 percent of the total peatland restoration target,” he said on Friday as quoted by Antara.

(Read also: Indonesia proposes three strategies in COP 22 to restore peatlands)

Established by President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to decrease forest fires, the agency has set a goal to recover 2.49 million ha of peatland of which about 1 million ha is located in protected forests, conservation forests and community forests.

During execution, the companies would have to comply with technical guidelines set by the government and install a monitoring censor for water surface with technology developed by the agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT), Nazir said. BRG would closely monitor the implementation of the measure, he added.

Indonesia, home to the world’s third-biggest tropical rain forest after the Amazon and the Congo Basin, has dealt with concurrent forest fires in recent years, causing a spread of haze to neighboring Malaysia, Singapore and even Thailand.

This incident has been attributed to massive expansion of oil palm plantations. (lnd)