“Meet the Paper Giant who’s talks an eco talk, but does it walk the walk?”

Asia Pulp & Paper (APP)

APP says they are “Taking the Lead in Major Conservation Initiative for the The Bukit Tigapuluh Forest Why?

“As home to one of the world’s most biodiverse rainforests, creating synergy between using the forest for needed economic development and the necessity to preserve this rare global good is one of the biggest challenges facing Indonesia today. With an extremely high population density, forestry plays a significant role in reducing poverty as well as maintaining an important environmental balance for the nation. As the biggest player in the Indonesian pulpwood plantation, pulp and paper industry, APP is an integral part in finding the answer to this challenge.” claims APP.

Destroying Bukit Tigapuluh for profit

Destroying Bukit Tigapuluh for profit

This unique tropical forest is Sumatra’s last remaining large forest blocks, home to two tribes of indigenous people, endangered elephants, tigers, orangutans and 250 mammals and bird species. The Bukit Tigapuluh Forest Landscape in central Sumatra contains some of the most biodiversity on Earth. It is also the location of a successful project to reintroduce orangutans, which now reside in an area. APPs history of “ environmental success” On February 2009, one of APP’s exclusive fiber suppliers, Arara Abadi, signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a collaborative program of Research and Development of Science and Technology in Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu (GSK – BB) Landscape in Riau Province, Sumatera. However, in 2007-08, APP affiliates began constructing a massive highway for logging vehicles that threatens one of Indonesia’s most important forests. The highway would cut an enormous swath through The Bukit Tigapuluh Forest the location of a successful project to reintroduceorangutans, which now reside in an area currently proposed for protected status but that is already being cleared by APP-affiliated companies.

In 2007, APP and Sinarmas Forestry (SMF) proposed a Biosphere Reserve, located mostly in the peat swamp forest of Riau Province, consists of almost 178,000 ha, over 40% of which was part of SMF plantation partners’ concession area and was set aside for permanent conservation. This is the first Biosphere Reserve initiative in South East Asia proposed by the private sector.

In 2008, after an investigation published in March by an environmental coalition called Eyes on the Forest showed evidence of a new road built by APP, heading through the Kampar peninsula, one of the world’s largest contiguous tropical peat swamp forests, with more carbon per hectare than any other ecosystem on Earth. The investigation found tracks on the new road of the critically endangered Sumatran Tiger, whose wild population has been reduced to less than 500 individuals.

Reintroduction of orangutans a success

Reintroduction of orangutans a success

The road to nowhere but destruction

The road to nowhere but destruction

APP claimed that it was building this state-of-the-art, paved highway for the benefit of the local communities, though satellite imagery shows that the road does not go anywhere near the two settlements.

Also APP was also found to be conducting illegal logging in Yunnan Province in China in 2005, while a subsidiary of the firm called “Green Rich” was caught illegally logging in Cambodia, leading a 2005 investigation into the company to conclude:

APP’s business model is a tactically aggressive one: it turns huge profits by quickly stripping forests bare, exploiting age-old forests and indigenous peoples, and leaving town before the environmental consequences are felt. By the time communities and governments lodge complaints and lawsuits, APP has divested itself of local interests and assets”

Exploiting indigenous people of Sumatra

Exploiting indigenous people of Sumatra

APP is one of the world’s leading pulp and paper companies in the world and is one of the largest vertically integrated pulp & paper producer in Asia, excluding Japan it could do much more to help the world. The company’s combined pulp, paper, and packaging capacities in Indonesia amount to over 7 million tons, using fiber and wood residues from new and developed plantations. APP supplies uncoated and colored papers; cartons and tubes, and a variety of stationery products including spiral notebooks, loose-leaf notebook paper, envelopes, and hardcover books. The company also makes office paper and bleached hardwood kraft pulp. These products have contributed to deforestation and increase pollution significantly for Sumatra and the world to deal with.

APP and its owner has been mired in illegal practices over the last 19 + years

1. a scam involving off shore money, US banks and Wall Street brokers in the early 1990s

2. APP is at the center of many environmental controversies including possible illegal logging in Cambodia and in Indonesia,

3. APP has breached agreements with three major environmental organizations.

4. APP is also well known for defaulting on debt repayments in 2001, during a period of wide-scale financial problems in the South East Asia region.

APP’s does business on the backs of indigenous peoples and at the expense of our world

“The APP business model is a tactically aggressive one:

APP’s turns huge profits by quickly stripping forests bare, exploiting age-old forests and indigenous peoples,

and leaving town before the environmental consequences are felt. By the time communities and governments

lodge complaints and lawsuits, APP has divested itself of local interests and assets.”

Some US companies have stopped doing business with APP so should the rest of the world.

Staples ended their 11-year relationship with APP, which had formerly supplied between 5 and 9% of the paper sold at the chain “due to their clear lack of progress in improving their environmental performance.” Other companies including Office Depot and Wall-Mart had cut ties previously on environmental grounds, and these have been followed more recently by Australian retailer Woolworths Limited.Brazil has increased its purchase of their paper and packaging products dramatically. I guess the fact that their rain forests are being mined and torn up by the thousands of acres a day has blinded them to using products produced by yet another foreign giant doing business as usual.

Help save Sumatra’s national treasures. Please donate to redapes.org

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of http://www.asiapulppaper.com

Excerpts courtesy of http://www.asiapulppaper.com/portal/APP_Portal.nsf/Web

Excerpts courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asia_Pulp_&_Paper

Excerpts courtesy of http://www.answers.com/topic/asia-pulp-paper

Image 1 courtesy of WWF.org Savesumatra.org/index.php/newspublication…

Image 2. road to destruction courtesy of   Wildlifeextra.com/images/sumatra-logging.jpg

Image 3. courtesy of Sciencedaily.com/images/2008/07/080703113628-large.jpg

Image 4. indigenous people courtesy of goallover.org/wp-content/2009/06/2431717962ab5ff9b0c2-300×199.jpg

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