Saturday, September 14, 2002

Indonesia's Forests Go Under the Ax for Flooring
By RAYMOND BONNER
September 13, 2002
the New York Times
----an article about the forests of Sumatra....an excerpt
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EKANBARU, Indonesia — On a verdant two-acre plot, where space has hastily been cleared for a few simple buildings, three heavy-duty band saws whine 24 hours a day, slicing huge logs into boards of varying lengths and widths.

Down the road another sawmill, with eight band saws and more than 200 workers, also cuts up logs 24 hours a day. The owners said they cannot keep up with the demand, a claim that's easily believed — along a four-mile stretch of road, there are an estimated 50 sawmills.

After being cut into long planks, most of this wood is bought by traders in Malaysia and Singapore, and then, after being further cut, sanded, molded and grooved, sold around the world — as flooring in China and Japan, office stationery in Europe and furniture in the United States.

Indonesia's timber industry is booming, good news for a country suffering widespread unemployment and mired in economic stagnation. There is a dark side, however: nearly all of these sawmills operate without a license, and overall, according to government figures, 80 percent of Indonesia's timber trade is illegal, which means that the trees are felled without a license or under a concession that had been secured with a bribe.

The corruption is rampant. Senior government officials insist on payoffs, from companies and big-time traders, in exchange for concessions. Military commanders take a cut or even have their own operations. The local policeman demands a payment to allow the trucks, laden with illegally cut logs, on the way to illegal sawmills, to proceed along the road...............
http://www.nytimes.com/2002/09/13/international/asia/13INDO.html
for more...........
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ya know...I find this DEPRESSING! *not* because of "forest ruin rampart due to corruption and eco-damge to the earth...but to this!!
---note that sentence,
"After being cut into long planks, most of this wood is bought by traders in Malaysia and Singapore, and then, after being further cut, sanded, molded and grooved, sold around the world — as flooring in China and Japan, office stationery in Europe and furniture in the United States."!!
you! yes YOU!
how many objects, in your home, office, school, library...etc...etc...have some of this wood in it?! just think: the local chapter of the "save the earth" foundation, in their office, why nearly every single OBJECT in that office may either have something in it that comes from endangered plants/animals, or be made using endangered things, like of having the product shipped to the office, in a box made with paper from those trees!
Each of us, nibbles away.

the school of the earth has a huge box of crayons, for the Creative Arts classes. the crayons are to be used, by the kids. the more Art that is done, the more use there is, of the crayons! soon they will all be used up and gone! the kids Graduate and class is over and school is done, for THIS year's class. school closes for the summer as 50 volcanoes erupt, and the earth renews....for the NEXT class-to-come!

----I guess if the earthclass is still here, 50 years from now, all the worlds forests will be Managed Forests, harvested clear-cuttedly, every 9 to 15 years!