Greenhouse Gases on the Rise in Indonesia
Capping off the month of November, the World Agroforestry Center and the Center for International Forestry Research, published a report showing that conversion of Indonesian forests into agroforestry has resulted in prodigious levels of greenhouse gas emissions without very little economic benefit to the surrounding communities. Collecting data on carbon emissions and land use changes in the provinces of East Kalimantan, Jambi and Lampung from 1990 to 2005, researchers found that over 400 megatons of greenhouse emissions were released primarily from 'slash and burn' land clearing. While the report correlates the emissions with economic gain, environmentalists agree that even if the economic gain of agroforestry industry in Indonesia was highly beneficial, the carbon emissions are too high. Palm oil, rubber and coffee are the primary crops here, which can be very profitable considering their demand is accompanied by high prices. However, there is still a long way to go in practicing sustainable agriculture in Indonesia.