Jakarta, 16 September 2019 – PT Kayung Agro Lestari (KAL), a business unit of PT Austindo Nusantara Jaya Tbk (ANJ) operating in Ketapang Regency, West Kalimantan, is fully deploying its capabilities to combat the increasing frequency of forest and peatland fires in the vicinity of its concession.
The Law Enforcement Team of the Ministry of Environment & Forestry (Gakkum KLHK), visited the KAL site on Saturday, 14 September 2019 and witnessed the efforts by the KAL team in handling the fires and confirmed the completeness of the Company’s required equipment and infrastructure. KAL appreciates the professionalism shown by the Gakkum KLHK Team in checking and verifying KAL’s readiness in responding to the fires.
KAL not only possesses sufficient equipment and infrastructure to handle forest and land fires, but it also has Standard Operating Procedures for fire prevention and emergency response to fire outbreaks. The KAL response team is fully trained and certified by the Manggala Agni (Indonesia Forest Fires Control Brigade). In addition, KAL has regularly socialised the need for fire prevention with the local communities .
KAL has mapped the fire-prone locations in the surrounding area and regularly monitors existing and potential hotspots. The Company asked the KLHK for assistance to minimize the hotspots in its vicinity in the beginning of September, as the number of hotspots outside the Company’s concession (HGU) began to escalate.
These hotspots are located in the Sungai Putri area and the community forest (Essential Ecosystem Area (Kawasan Ekosistem Esensial/KEE) to the south of our plantation and conservation areas, home to 150 orangutans and part of KEE. KAL understands that its request has yet to be met since the KLHK must give priority to hotspots that are located closer to residential areas, which are further away from the Sungai Putri area.
As the hotspots in the forest cannot be easily accessed, KAL has been left on its own to combat the fires. Of particular concern are hotspots and fire outbreaks in peatland, adjacent to the 2,330-hectare conservation area outside of KAL’s HGU.
As a member of the KEE Management Forum, KAL coordinates with the local government and continues to offer material assistance in fire prevention and combating fire in this area to the best of its ability.
With regard to the sealing by KLHK of one of the blocks within the KAL plantation area, the Company understands the procedures that should be carried out by KLHK. The Company also believes that the KLHK and other law enforcers will work professionally and fairly in the next stage of the process.
KAL continues its round-the-clock efforts to extinguish fires, both inside and around its HGU area. Recognizing that the prolonged dry season is not yet over, KAL also urges all stakeholders in the KEE Management Forum, including the Government, to play an active part to secure the conservation area, a home for 150 orangutans.
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