Oil palm plantation
Indonesia’s Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) arrested Amran Batalipu, the regent of Buol, Central Sulawesi, on charges that he received bribes in issuing palm oil plantation permits in his regency.
The companies, PT Citra Cakra Murdaya and PT Hardaya, are located in Bukal district. Both companies are owned by Sri Hartati Cakra Murdaya, a businesswoman and politician who is a board member of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s Democrat Party. The Jakarta Globe calls her a “prominent SBY benefactor.”
Two Indonesian mining companies are operating inside a conservation area in Morowali regency, said a government conservation agency. The Nature Conservation Agency said it warned the companies to stop their operation but was ignored.
The companies said they have a mining permit from the Morowali regent.
The Ministry of Forestry suspended PT Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper’s (RAPP) operations on Padang Island, pending a resolution of a conflict between the company and the islanders. RAPP is a subsidiary of APRIL, a one of Indonesia’s largest pulp and paper companies.
But Padang islanders have accused RAPP of breaching the ministerial decision. Misno, a representative of the Society to Save Padang Island, said communities members have found evidence that RAPP continues to operate on the island.
Farmers from Ogan Ilir regency in South Sumatra demanded that state-owned company PT Perkebunan Nusantara VII return disputed land currently allocatef for oil palm plantations. The National Land Agency said it would review a 6,500-ha concession granted to the company and block a permit for an additional 13,500-ha concession.
The Punan tribe demanded PT Intracawood suspend logging operations in an area of forest in Bulungan regency in East Kalimantan. The Punan, a Dayak tribe, said Intracawood has logged some 15,000-ha of a 23,139-ha concession located on customary land.
Starting next year, big building owners will be required to follow environmental guidelines as laid out in the governor’s 2012 regulation on green buildings. Head of planning and monitoring at the Jakarta Construction Supervision and Regulation Agency (P2B) Pandita said that the agency is still engaged in a massive publicity campaign to introduce the policy to owners and consultants. The regulation, which will come into effect from April 2013, will only be imposed on certain buildings: schools and other educational centers exceeding 10,000 square meters; hotels and health centers of more than 20,000 square meters, shopping malls, offices and apartment complexes of over 50,000 square meters. According to the agency, there are around 200 buildings in the city matching the criterion.
Palembang, a city in Sumatra, is a major hub for the illegal primate trade in Indonesia, according to a new report issued by ProFauna Indonesia and the International Primate Protection League (IPPL). Primate Trade in Palembang, South Sumatra reported that the primate trade in Palembang is centered on the 16 Ilir market, where other illegal wildlife is also bought and sold.
Sumatra’s tropical rainforest is on the list of UNESCO’s 38 world’s most threatened heritage sites, according to the U.N. The 2.5-million-hectare Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra site comprises three national parks: Gunung Leuser National Park, Kerinci Seblat National Park and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park. The protected area is home to an estimated 10,000 plant species, including 17 endemic genera; more than 200 mammal species; and some 580 bird species of which 465 are resident and 21 are endemic. The site is threatened by conversion for pulp and paper plantations, oil palm estates, logging, fires, and agricultural encroachment.
Illegal gold mining in Petapahan Village in Riau Province is polluting water sources and could trigger birth defects, warned Indragiri Hulu, a local member of Parliament. Indragiri said that no serious action has taken to date by the local government or police on the matter.