Forums and Chat for Indonesia's English-speaking community
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#45044 - 14 Feb 07 00:24 For Peat's Sake
Roy's Hair Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 08 Nov 06
Posts: 3974
Loc: jakarta
Getting into the rainforest in Kalimantan requires a bit of travel. A few kilometres by boat; another kilometre or so by hand-built rail-cart.


Pak Alim and others are trying to rehydrate the peatlands

As you move in under the canopy of trees, clouds of butterflies dart into the path, and the sounds of insects cluster in the air.

But this is no virgin forest. This is a 10-year-old project to rehabilitate an area destroyed by logging.

Pak Alim is one of those involved. This project is important, he said, because it is perhaps the only research site in Central Kalimantan where the conditions of the rainforest have been reproduced.

This is a peat forest - built on metres of thick, high carbon soil. Peat is important because of its ability to process greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane.

Pak Alim's favourite name for them is "the lungs of the world".

But those lungs are shrinking.

Forest fires

According to the conservation organisation Wetlands International, 48% of the country's peatland forest has been deforested, and most of the rest degraded by illegal logging. And that has caused some major problems.

Marcel Silvius, a senior programme manager for Wetlands International, believes we are looking at one of the biggest environmental disasters of our age.



We had to work very hard to transform it into the agricultural land you see today

Ratni
Kalimantan farmer

"From the drainage of its peatlands alone," he told me, "Indonesia is producing 632 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

"But from its annual forest fires, it produces another 1,400 million tonnes. That's a total of 2,000 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. The Netherlands emits 80 million."

Indonesia's annual forest fires are a major problem, and have been increasing over recent years.

Sometimes they are caused by companies wanting a fast, cheap way of clearing the land for planting.

Sometimes, though, it is local villagers, eking out a living from small patches of land hewn out of the forest.

Ratni has lived here for 30 years. She arrived as part of a government transmigration scheme, to put farmers to work in the southern peatlands of Kalimantan.

"At first it was very difficult," she said. "There were no roads, and the soil was very difficult. When you put a cigarette out on the ground, it would just burn. We had to work very hard to transform it into the agricultural land you see today."

Ratni and her neighbours say they still use fires to clear their land each year.

But the peat forest round here has already been dried out by water channels, dug to drain the land for agriculture, or to transport timber, and fire spreads easily. Last year's blazes have left much of it blackened and sooty.

Flood fears

But one area of this forest is still green, and slim trees are beginning to fill out the landscape.

This is the site of a pilot project by Pak Alim and his colleagues to rehydrate the peatlands.


Rehydrating the peatlands poses dilemmas for the government

He showed us a small dam, built to block one of the channels and keep the water in.

"Since the dam was built," he said, "we're seeing more green here. Without it, the water level in the soil is very low and the area can't recover from the fires."

But he said, they had to be careful.

"If we take drastic measures and flood the whole area, yes we might see more trees, but we'll also kill the local community be flooding their agricultural land," he explained.

"Before, the thick trees would keep the water in during the wet season, now it would flood in all directions."

The Indonesian government agrees that there is no simple solution for the peatlands.

Agus Purnomo, a senior official at Indonesia's environment ministry, believes there are two major causes of the problem - big companies and local farmers.

For the big companies, the solution is to enforce the law, he said, and that is the easy part.

"For the second problem, the issue we're confronting is poverty," he said.

"To prevent people opening up peatlands for agriculture or whatever, we need to come up with development projects that directly benefit the local poor, and that is a challenge that has to be solved by the government as a whole."

Environmental ironies

People like Ratni may be one of the causes of the destruction, but they are also the first to feel its effects.

Each year, smog-like haze, caused by forest fires descends over this community for weeks at a time. It is bad for Ratni's breathing, and her crops.



Rehydrating the peatlands nearby would help stop the fires - and the haze - but it could also put an end to Ratni's home and livelihood.

And it would limit the government's plans for expanding the country's bio-fuels industry.

Global demand for alternative forms of energy - such as palm oil - is putting pressure on Indonesia's shrinking carbon sinks as plantation companies vie for land.

It is an irony that the global community will need to address if green energy is going to help stop climate change, rather than accelerate it.
_________________________
Chinese like more traditional patterns on their ring.

Top
#45046 - 14 Feb 07 00:48 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Roy's Hair]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Saddening. I have been in Sumatra many times and seen the same thing!

_________________________
Menace to Sobriety


Top
#45063 - 14 Feb 07 01:40 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Dilli]
Roy's Hair Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 08 Nov 06
Posts: 3974
Loc: jakarta
i think it was Soeharto who drained all the peat lands for his rice self sufficiency project and now because the water's gone they are releasing loads o methane into the atmosphere, methane being a greenhouse gas many times stronger than CO2. This process has made Indonesia the world's 3rd largest producer of greenhouse gas!! What is it with Indos and rice anyway?? It's total fetishism, they're obsessed by the bloody stuff. The country would be in a better way if they'd grow some other crops for a change
_________________________
Chinese like more traditional patterns on their ring.

Top
#45116 - 14 Feb 07 04:55 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Roy's Hair]
Polisi Tidur Offline
Member+

Registered: 26 Jan 07
Posts: 47
Loc: Bikini Bottom
There must be another crop or another way of growing an appropriate species of rice. It's an agricultural technology challenge but the imagination doesn't seem to be there to try. I've seen photos of insane land conversion schemes in Papuan lowland swamp areas that are a total exercise in futility and destruction - they don't even last a decade, but kill off the adapted vegetation in the attempt, leaving an impoverished transmigrant community with no income except from illegal logging and running bootleg booze to f*** up indigenous Papuan communities as well.

Top
#45121 - 14 Feb 07 05:21 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Polisi Tidur]
Piss Salon Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 27 Jun 06
Posts: 4039
Loc: Jakpus
This is my excuse baby, and I'm sticking to it. This new shiny broom on the other hand ...

Valentine bouquets 'are bad for the planet'
By Nicole Martin
Last Updated: 1:53am GMT 10/02/2007

The Valentine's Day bouquet — the gift that every woman in Britain will be waiting for next week — has become the latest bęte noire among environmental campaigners.

Latest Government figures show that the flowers that make up the average bunch have flown 33,800 miles to reach Britain.

In the past three years, the amount of flowers imported from the Netherlands has fallen by 47 per cent to 94,000 tons, while those from Africa have risen 39 per cent to 17,000 tons.


Brings a whole new meaning to 'flower power'. Seriously, I think we are all fucked and I can't believe I want to start having children.
_________________________
place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes

Top
#45135 - 14 Feb 07 06:10 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Piss Salon]
Piss Salon Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 27 Jun 06
Posts: 4039
Loc: Jakpus
Did we fly to the moon to soon
did we squander the chance
in the rush of the race
the reason we chase is lost in romance
and still we try
to justify the waste
for a taste of man's greatest adventure

I blame you for the moonlit sky
and the dream that died
with the eagles flight
I blame you for the moonlit nights
when i wonder why
are the seas still dry?
don't blame this sleeping satellite

Have we lost what it takes to advance?
have we peaked too soon
if the world is so green
then why does it scream under a blue moon
we wonder why
If the earths sacrificed
for the price of it's greatest treasure

I blame you for the moonlit sky
and the dream that died
with the eagles' flight
blame you for the moonlit nights
when i wonder why
are the seas still dry?
don't blame this sleeping satellite

and when we shoot for stars
what a giant step
have we got what it takes
to carry the weight of this concept
or pass it by like a shot in the dark
miss the mark with a sense of adventure


Attachments
904-thor_cfht.jpg


_________________________
place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes

Top
#45136 - 14 Feb 07 06:14 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Piss Salon]
chewwyUK Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 14 Sep 06
Posts: 2392
Loc: Jakarta
I dont care what everybody esle says piss -- you do have a sensative side. Thanks for that little gem


Edited by chewwyUK (14 Feb 07 06:15)
_________________________
Edited by Piss Salon
Edit Reason: taste

Top
#45177 - 14 Feb 07 11:15 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: chewwyUK]
Roy's Hair Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 08 Nov 06
Posts: 3974
Loc: jakarta
nice nebula son
_________________________
Chinese like more traditional patterns on their ring.

Top
#45182 - 14 Feb 07 12:45 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Roy's Hair]
Piss Salon Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 27 Jun 06
Posts: 4039
Loc: Jakpus
Thor's Helmet. Snigger.
_________________________
place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes

Top
#45208 - 14 Feb 07 22:39 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Piss Salon]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
If my helmet looked like that Id go to Global Doctor pronto!
_________________________
Menace to Sobriety


Top
#45218 - 15 Feb 07 02:01 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Dilli]
Roy's Hair Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 08 Nov 06
Posts: 3974
Loc: jakarta
he's coming a whole Milky Way! go go the helmet!! Happy valentine's . A man comes 100,000,000 sperm in each load you know. This means I have wiped entire civilisations off my chest....with a grey sports sock
_________________________
Chinese like more traditional patterns on their ring.

Top
#45225 - 15 Feb 07 02:35 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: Roy's Hair]
chewwyUK Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 14 Sep 06
Posts: 2392
Loc: Jakarta
Ahhhhhh Roy ...... Bill Hicks at his very best !!
_________________________
Edited by Piss Salon
Edit Reason: taste

Top
#45228 - 15 Feb 07 02:48 Re: For Peat's Sake [Re: chewwyUK]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
While Roy is busy, I am sure we can make a correlation between his dick and the internet!

It can be up or down. It's more fun when it's up, but it makes it hard to get any real work done.

In the long-distant past, its only purpose was to transmit information considered vital to the survival of the species. Some people still think that's the only thing it should be used for, but most folks today use it for fun most of the time.

It has no conscience and no memory. Left to its own devices, it will just do the same damn dumb things it did before.

It provides a way to interact with other people. Some people take this interaction very seriously, others treat it as a lark.

Sometimes it's hard to tell what kind of person you're dealing with until it's too late.

If you don't apply the appropriate protective measures, it can spread viruses.

It has no brain of its own. Instead, it uses yours. If you use it too much, you'll find it becomes more and more difficult to think coherently.

We attach an importance to it that is far greater than its actual size and influence warrant.

If you're not careful what you do with it, it can get you in big trouble.

It has its own agenda. Somehow, no matter how good your intentions, it will warp your behavior. Later you may ask yourself "why on earth did I do that?"

Some folks have it, some don't.

Those who have it would be devastated if it were ever cut off. They think that those who don't have it are somehow inferior. They think it gives them power. They are wrong.

Those who don't have it may agree that it's a nifty toy, but think it's not worth the fuss that those who do have it make about it. Still, many of those who don't have it would like to try it.

Once you've started playing with it, it's hard to stop.

Some people would just play with it all day if they didn't have work to do.

_________________________
Menace to Sobriety


Top


Moderator:  NetCop