SAVE Orangutans

say no to palm oil

                                Illegal Logging in Indonesia

Before we launch into more detailed information about illegal logging I just want to briefly explain it's affect on orangutans and 4000 other species of flora and fauna which is only found in these rainforests. Before any land is used for palm oil production the native rainforest is felled illegally or in some cases legally if land has been purchased form the local owners. The wood is the most valuable part. After felling the land is burnt and cleared for palm oil plantings. The male orangutans have usually left by the time the rainforest is cleared but the female orangutans (especially if with a baby) generally try to hang around. Their food source is gone and so they try to eat the new palm oil tree shoots. Because of this they are murdered and the baby is usually sold and will endure a horrible life as someone's chained pet or in some lame zoo or tourist attraction. There are men whose job it is to murder any orangutan on the plantation, this is usually done brutally.

the below information was borrowed from

A study done in 2000 by the Indonesia-United Kingdom Tropical Forest Management Programme concluded that 73% of logging done in Indonesia was illegal. While Indonesia’s forest ministry official harvest figures are just under 882 million cubic feet per year, the combined log consumption capacity of plywood, sawn wood, and pulp and paper industries is 2.6 billion cubic feet per year, which means that industries obtain between one-half and two-thirds of their logs from illegal or unsustainable sources. Illegal logging produces 1.8 billion cubic feet of logs annually, resulting in state financial losses of approximately $3.37 billion. The value of timber stolen from TPNP alone is $8 million each year.

Indonesia has the most extensive rainforests in Asia, globally ranking third in size after those of Brazil and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and their biological richness is unique. Many habitats and species are under serious threat as a result of deforestation; between 1990 and 2005, Indonesia lost 28 million ha of forest, including 21.7 million ha of virgin forest. This loss of primary forest was second only to that in Brazil and the deforestation rate is still increasing. In the 1960s 82% of the country was forested; today, that figure is 49%. Much of the remaining cover is over-logged and degraded. Indonesia's forests are some of the most threatened in the world.

The destruction and degradation of the forests is the result of logging, mining operations, large-scale agricultural conversions, settlement, subsistence farming and fuelwood cutting.

Indonesia is the worlds largest exporter of tropical timber, valued at more than $5 billion per year. More than 48 million ha of forest are operated under concessions. Logging has opened up more and more remote areas of the country as companies seek the most valuable timber. It is estimated that up to 70% of the volume harvested is from illegal logging. Apart from the destruction of precious forest, illegal logging reduces revenues for the government (one estimate puts the loss at $1 billion a year), distorts the timber markets (particularly as Indonesia is such a large exporter), and has considerable impacts on local communities.

Despite a government ban on the export of raw logs from Indonesia, timber is regularly smuggled out via Malaysia and Singapore for processing in other neighbouring countries, from where it is exported across the world. Much of this illegally traded timber is known to end up in the US and EU. In October 2008, the Forestry Ministry introduced a policy which requires timber companies to have the timber stocks audited to ensure that it originated in sustainably managed forests, in a further attempt to halt illegal logging. However, corruption is widespread and reduces the effectiveness of any legislation or enforcement attempts.

Indonesia is one of three Asian countries to have requested assistance from the UN to combat deforestation under the REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) programme. The Norwegian government has provided $35 million for the first phase of the programme, aimed at encouraging tropical countries to reduce forest destruction through establishing systems for monitoring, assessment, reporting and verification of forests and carbon stocks, and for capacity building.

Indonesia is one of the first countries to be negotiating a
Voluntary Partnership Agreement with the EU. Under the VPA, timber exported to the EU must be certified as legally harvested. However, the negotiations are making slow progress at present and there is no date set for finalising the agreement.Add your main content here - text, photos, videos, addons, whatever you want!