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Indonesia

In 2015, massive fires burned across Indonesia, releasing hazardous smoke across neighboring countries. How close is the country to meeting its goal of reducing haze from future fires?

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Read more: Here’s What Indonesia is Doing About its Deadly Haze from Forest and Peatland Fires

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Oil palm plantation in Bogor, Indonesia. Photo by a_rabin/flickr

Deforestation in Indonesia is an old tale. People know the rate keeps increasing, but they’re not quite sure why. Some blame the oil palm and pulp and paper plantations, but not everyone is convinced. While various studies suggested that oil palm plantations are obvious culprits of deforestation, others attempt to show otherwise. Recent media reports in Indonesia cited a study suggesting that oil palm does not drive deforestation since the plantations were not converted from forests - which is somewhat misleading. Critics fault pending legislation on palm oil as overly lenient on big companies and a potential threat to forest sustainability. To help clarify this heated debate, we analyzed data from Global Forest Watch to show that 55 percent of forest loss occurs inside legal concession areas, where removing trees is allowed to some extent, but 45 percent of forest loss took place outside legal concession areas.  

Read more: Drivers of Deforestation in Indonesia, Inside and Outside Concessions Areas

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The three nations – all members of the Paris climate agreement – are involved with 18 of 22 coal power deals made in Indonesia since 2010, according to a report from Market Forces, an Australia-based environmental finance organization.

Brandon Camp

BANGKOKJapan, China, and South Korea are bankrolling environmentally destructive coal-fired power plants in Indonesia despite their pledges to reduce climate-changing emissions under the Paris climate deal, analysts told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Read more: Japan, China, and South Korea violate Paris agreement by funding coal in Indonesia

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