Despite moratorium, Indonesia failing to take action on illegal palm oil plantations
Indonesian authorities are failing to take action against a palm oil company that is operating illegally in Central Kalimantan, alleges a new report by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) and Telapak. The report, published Thursday, says that authorities have failed to conduct a criminal investigation into the illegal conversion of more than 23,000 hectares of peatland and peat forest by PT SCP, part of the BEST Group, despite being provided with "sufficient evidence" to do so. EIA and Telapak say the dossier detailed PT SCP's violations of laws governing "land allocation, access to resources and environmental management."
"This case clearly demonstrates the gulf between the rhetoric on reducing deforestation and the reality on the ground. The Government has been aware of the illegality for years but has demonstrated no intent to do anything to protect the environment or the local community in line with the law," said EIA Forests Campaigner Tom Johnson in a statement. "Companies such as PT SCP are operating with extraordinary levels of impunity. A key reason for that is because government officials don’t appear to feel they have any obligation to enforce the law."
"So long as this company continues to profit from its illegal activities with impunity, the Government is effectively sending out the message that it is open season on Indonesia’s peat lands."
Article continues at Indonesia.
Palm image via Wikipedia.