Greenpeace hails SBY`s deforestation moratorium plan

Greenpeace hails SBY`s deforestation moratorium plan
Antara News, 29 May 2010

Greenpeace has hailed President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono`s plan to declare a moratorium on deforestation that he expressed before the signing of an agreement between Indonesia and Norway on forest conservation worth US$1 billion in Oslo on Wednesday.

Greenpeace`s chief forest campaigner for Southeast Asia Bustar Maitar said in a press statement here on Friday that Greenpeace hailed the president`s moratorium plan.

"We hope the president upon his return to Indonesia would soon implement the moratorium and stop all peat land and forest conversions," Bustar said.

The governments of Indonesia and Norway signed in Oslo on Wednesday a Letter of Intent (LoI) on forest conservation worth US$1 billion as part of their joint commitment to overcoming climate change.

The LoI is part of the REDD-Plus scheme in which Norway will provide up to US$1 billion in grant for Indonesia to protect its forests.

It aims to build capacity needed to implement strategies for the the reduction of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD).

Yudhoyono expressed the moratorium commitment when he gave a press conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, one day before the opening of the Forest and Climate Conference in Oslo.

Other Greenpeace activist Yuyun Indradi said meanwhile that Indonesia had to be able to measure how far the present deforestation had contributed to the emission level, not how far the damage it would cause to forest in the future.

Indradi said that Greenpeace was of the opinion that any agreement on deforestation should be designed in such away so that concrete steps to protect forest at the national level could be taken comprehensively, not on a sectoral and separate basis.

He said that the REDD funds should be aimed at protecting natural forests, including peat land, because protecting all this would have a big potential to reduce the green house gas emissions.