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San Francisco: Rolf Skar, Greenpeace Senior forest campaigner:
New Report Links Sinar Mas Group, Major Brands to Rainforest Destruction
Palm Oil and Paper Giant Sinar Mas Set to Undermine Indonesia’s Plan to Curb Deforestation and Climate Pollution
JAKARTA, INDONESIA/SAN FRANCISCO - July 6 - A new Greenpeace report shows how global brands are fueling climate change and pushing Sumatran tigers and orangutans towards the brink of extinction by using paper made from Indonesian rainforest destruction.(1)
The report, How Sinar Mas is Pulping the Planet, traces the connection from Asia Pulp and Paper (APP)(2), the paper subsidiary of the notorious Sinar Mas group, to major international brands.
Rolf Skar, Greenpeace senior forest campaigner, said "Our new investigation shows Sinar Mas is selling paper products from rainforest and peatland destruction to major brands all over the world."
The Greenpeace documents how Sinar Mas is wreaking havoc in two important rainforest areas on the Indonesian island of Sumatra: the Bukit Tigapuluh Forest Landscape and the Kerumantan peat forest. Bukit Tigapuluh is one of the last refuges for critically endangered Sumatran tigers and orangutans. Kerumutan's carbon rich peatlands are a key defense against climate change; some Kerumutan peat is deeper than three meters and illegal to clear under Indonesian law. Despite this, APP uses the logs from these rainforest areas to feed its Sumatran based pulp mills, which export pulp and paper products worldwide.
"Kerumutan and Bukit Tigapuluh are just two of many endangered forests being decimated by Sinar Mas for paper and palm oil plantation expansion" said Skar. "Indonesian President Yudyohono's new commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation will be undermined unless he extends the moratorium on new deforestation licenses to cover all forest and peatlands that are currently slated for destruction by Sinar Mas and other companies," he concluded.
Several leading companies have already responded to Greenpeace evidence of the Sinar Mas group's destructive practices by cancelling their contracts with the Indonesian palm oil and paper giant (3). Kraft has confirmed that is phasing out APP paper and packaging, (4) whilst Kimberly- Clark, Nestle and Unilever are implementing new policies that will also rule out supplies from APP, unless the company and its suppliers make substantial changes. Unilever, Kraft, and Nestle have also dropped contracts with Golden Agri Resources (GAR), the Sinar Mas group's palm oil arm, following recent Greenpeace campaigns. (5) In the financial world, HSBC Global Asset Management announced it dropped all holdings in GAR.
"It's time for companies like Burger King, Dunkin' Donuts and Kentucky Fried Chicken to catch up. We're calling on companies in this report to stop doing business with Sinar Mas immediately. In addition, we urge them to publicly support the immediate protection of Indonesia's peatlands and back a moratorium on rainforest destruction," continued Skar.
The destruction of rainforests and peatlands is the key reason why Indonesia accounts for around a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions caused by deforestation. (6) According to recent government estimates, Indonesia ranks as the world's third largest greenhouse gas emitter. (7)
Notes to Editor
NOTES TO EDITORS
(1) Greenpeace report "How Sinar Mas is
Pulping the Planet", July 2010 http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/publications/reports/SinarMas-APP
(2) APP has major facilities in Indonesia and China and is expanding in Australia, Canada and the US. It has sales networks in the US, the UK and Spain.
(3) Between November 2007 and April 2010, Greenpeace released a series of reports documenting Sinar Mas' rainforest and peatland destruction for palm oil including Illegal forest clearance and RSPO greenwash: Case study of Sinar Mas at http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/files/pdfs/forests/sinarmasRSPOgreenwash.pdf.
(4) Letter from Kraft Foods to Greenpeace UK, 1 July 2010.
(5) A number of major corporations including Staples, Office Depot and Woolworths (Australia) have dropped paper contracts with Sinar Mas due to its environmental bad practises.
(6) For full reference see ‘How Sinar Mas is Pulping the Planet p.32 Endnote 6
(7) For full reference see ‘How Sinar Mas is Pulping the Planet p.32 Endnote 7