Indonesia is the world’s third largest emitter of carbon dioxide. This has been caused by destroying peatlands and widespread deforestation, where 80% of it is illegal and used for palm oil and timber plantations which are usually operated by large companies that do not take the environment into consideration. Indonesia’s new president Joko Widodo, announced “If they (plantation companies) are indeed destroying the ecosystem because of their monoculture plantations, they will have to be terminated. It must be stopped, we mustn’t allow our tropical rainforest to disappear because of monoculture plantations like palm oil.”
The new president also believes that the peatlands should be managed by the community to farm sago (a staple food), as he can trust that the community will use the area in a correct manner that looks after the environment, something that the larger companies won’t do.
Greenpeace hopes that from now on, the protection of Indonesia’s forests and peatlands will be greatly improved and that strict rules will now come in to place. They have mentioned that the “existing laws are weak and poorly enforced.”