World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Indo Plants 79 Million Trees Ahead UN Conference

By Nancy-Amelia Collins

Indonesia Plants 79 Million Trees Ahead of UN Climate Change Conference

The Indonesian government says it has planted 79 million trees in a single day across the sprawling archipelago as part of a global campaign to plant one billion trees. The effort comes just days ahead of the United Nations climate change conference in Bali.

Indonesia began its tree-planting drive to show the government is serious about protecting the country's deteriorating environment.

Environmental experts say Indonesia is losing its forests at a faster rate than any another country because of illegal logging and the creation of new palm oil plantations.

The draining and burning of carbon-rich peat lands to make way for palm oil plantations also help make the nation the world's third largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Many scientists think those gases contribute to global warming, while deforestation robs the planet of trees that can absorb some greenhouse gases, and help cool the land.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who kicked off Wednesday's event by planting saplings along with members of his government, declared illegal logging the country's "biggest enemy."

Farah Sofa, the deputy director of the Indonesian environmental group WALHI, says tree planting alone will not be enough to stop rapid deforestation.

"It has to be appreciated, the initiative," she said. " I mean, this could be like one of those good initiatives but certainly it's not enough for addressing the environmental issues related to deforestation in Indonesia."

Farah, along with many national and international environmental groups, wants the government to declare a moratorium on palm oil plantations and all forms of logging.

"The illegal logging's happening because there is always a market, there's always a demand for Indonesian timber domestically and globally," she said. "So if the government declares that they put a moratorium [on] logging in place, then any kind of timber coming out of Indonesia must be illegal, yeah?"

Indonesia will host a United Nations conference on climate change beginning Monday on the island of Bali.

Representatives from 180 countries will attend the 11-day conference, and they will try to develop a replacement for the Kyoto Protocol on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which expires in 2012. The delegates, however, will face pressure to make sure that any new agreement does not harm economic growth, particularly for developing nations such as Indonesia.


More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


OECD: COVID-19 Crisis Puts Migration And Progress On Integration At Risk, Says

Watch the live webcast of the press conference Migration flows have increased over the past decade and some progress has been made to improve the integration of immigrants in the host countries. But some of these gains may be erased by the COVID-19 pandemic ... More>>

Pacific Media Watch: How Pacific Environmental Defenders Are Coping With The Covid Pandemic

SPECIAL REPORT: By Sri Krishnamurthi of Pacific Media Watch Pacific Climate Warriors - creative action to trigger better responses to climate crisis. Image: ... More>>

Reporters Without Borders: Julian Assange’s Extradition Hearing Marred By Barriers To Open Justice

After monitoring four weeks of evidence in the US extradition proceedings against Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reiterates concern regarding the targeting of Assange for his contributions to journalism, and calls ... More>>

OHCHR: Stranded Migrants Need Safe And Dignified Return – UN Migrant Workers Committee

The UN Committee on Migrant Workers has today called on governments to take immediate action to address the inhumane conditions of migrant workers who are stranded in detention camps and ensure they can have an orderly, safe and dignified return to ... More>>