Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Destruction of forests

Category: Photographs by Graham Bould

"Sumatra has lost a staggering 80 per cent of its old growth forest in an orgy of logging, both legal and illegal, over the past 30 years, putting it in a league occupied only by Kalimantan - Indonesian Borneo - and the eastern Amazon...

"A failure of officialdom to enforce the rules in logging concessions means too much timber is taken out.
"A similar failure to enforce land rights, despite the fact that the government owns all forest land, often the result of corruption at all levels, means illegal loggers move in, often in collusion with illegal squatters." - Indonesia destroys forests as Bali looks for solution

"When the trees are gone, the ground temperature increases to as high as 70 degrees" Celsius, said Indonesian forestry worker Jonotoro...

"Because of the destruction of the forests Indonesia has become the third-largest source of carbon dioxide emissions caused by human activity, behind the US and China.
Indonesia, host of the world climate conference now under way on the resort island of Bali, plans to make protection of tropical forests an important topic during the meeting. In particular, Jakarta wants to be financially compensated for taking steps to protect the forests...
The problem is that while the central government in Jakarta has passed a number of laws to protect the forest, local officials can be bribed to ignore them. - Demand for palm oil sets off wave of deforestation

"In South America, the loss of 4.3 million hectares a year is driven in part by meat consumption that encourages conversion of forests to pasture lands throughout the region. In Ecuador, road building has been a major cause of deforestation.

"In sub-Saharan Africa, fuelwood extraction and charcoal production are factors behind the continent's loss of 4 million hectares a year...

"Since forest property rights are often very unclear, payment for carbon services could end up providing incentives for corrupt officials or local elites to appropriate this new forest value from local communities." - Scientists warn forest carbon payment schemes could increase poverty


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