After conducting an evaluation of the 10-year work plan of PT RAPP, a subsidiary of APRIL, Indonesia's Ministry of the Environment and Forestry took the decision to annul this work plan (Oct 4), owing in part to the new expansion of acacia plantation blocks in the company’s concessions, most notably in their estates located in the Kampar Peninsula landscape and on Pulau Padang, in Sumatra's Riau province.
In contradiction of the denial issued by Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) stating that PT BMH is not a subsidiary of APP or the Sinarmas Forestry group, as was reported by Mongabay, legal documents officially submitted by PT BMH to the Environment and Forestry Ministry show that the company is indeed a subsidiary of the Sinarmas group. In light of this, foresthints.news sent an email to APP and Sinarmas Forestry asking whether they would be willing to respond, confirming the veracity or lack thereof of the legal documents, if the documents in question, which were in the possession of foresthints.news, were emailed to them. However, by time of the deadline provided foresthints.news had yet to receive any response from APP or the Sinarmas Forestry group.
In these official legal documents, PT BMH declares that it is part of and incorporated with the Sinarmas group. What’s more, PT BMH also writes that it is one of several subsidiaries of the Sinarmas group.
WWF and Greenpeace, both of which are members of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) - a committee established by the APRIL Group to oversee the implementation of its Sustainability Policy - have declared that APRIL must abide by the decisions made by the Indonesian government in the wake of the peatland violationsperpetrated by the APRIL subsidiary, PT RAPP, in its concession on Pulau Padang, in Sumatra's Riau province.
A new policy brief by Wetlands International and Tropenbos International calls for a thorough science-based approach, instead of some of the currently widely applied policies and management models, which have insufficiently considered the issue of peatland subsidence. In 2015 Indonesia was hit by a disastrous haze event caused by extensive peatland fires in Sumatra and Kalimantan. In response, the Indonesian government launched a national Peatland Restoration Agency (BRG) with an ambitious target of restoring over 2 million hectares of peatlands by 2020. Success will depend on a proper understanding of the functioning of peatlands.