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BerichtOnderwerp: Jokowi wants Indonesia to maintain function as lung of the world   do 26 nov 2015 - 21:06

Jokowi wants Indonesia to maintain function as lung of the world | National | Thu, November 26 2015, 2:22 PM

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Thursday visited the Sultan Adam People Forest Park (Tahura) in South Kalimantan to attend the commemoration of Indonesian Tree Planting Day and kick off the month-long tree-plating campaign as parts of national efforts to maintain the country’s role as the lung of the world.

“Today, we are planting 2,000 trees. As total of 8,000 trees have been planted since Monday,” said the President while symbolically planting a tree in the forest in the company of First Lady Iriana Widodo, as stated in the Presidential Office’s press release.

About 105 hectares of the Sultan Adam People Forest, which covers a total area of 116,000 hectares, were recently ravaged by wildfires, along with thousands more hectares of forest land in Sumatra and Kalimantan in the country’s worst-ever forest fires.

The environmental catastrophe did not only destroy the forests, but also caused serious problems for people’s health and air transportation due to widespread haze.

The government has come under heavy criticism for what many saw as a sluggish effort to stop the forest and peatland fires, and particularly for its late decision to accept foreign help in extinguishing the fires.

Jokowi called on Indonesians to rehabilitate the forests and carry on the momentum of Tree Planting Day and the National Flora and Fauna Day to improve the country’s environment.

“We need to conserve flora and fauna to maintain the country’s biodiversity and the country’s function as the lung of the world,” said the President.

During the occasion, the President also handed over awards to the winners of the 2014 National Tree Planting Competition to governors, regents and mayors as well as businesspeople, universities, schools, cooperatives and individuals who played important roles in protecting trees.

Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya said the government would rehabilitate more than 100 hectares of Sultan Adam People Forest Park that was on fire recently. (bbn)(+)

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