- Golden Agri-Resources to further help Indonesia tackle the complex causes of fire and haze
- Golden Agri-Resources will launch peatland rehabilitation project
- Enhanced sustainability commitments developed in consultation with leading NGOs
Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) today launches a Peat Ecosystem Rehabilitation Project in one of the company’s concessions in West Kalimantan. This will help to develop fire prevention measures and commits the company to the long term protection of the area.
GAR will rehabilitate the ecosystem of undeveloped peatland next to established plantations which is at risk of third-party encroachment and vulnerable to fire. The project comes at a time when the Indonesian government is considering a moratorium on peatland development and ways to revitalize peat areas to tackle haze-causing fires.
It is also in line with the company’s wider commitments under its enhanced GAR Social and Environmental Policy (GSEP), adopted four years after GAR’s Forest Conservation Policy (FCP) was launched.
“Indonesia needs solutions to the pressing issues of climate change, forest loss and fire. Through our Social and Environmental Policy and our commitment to peat rehabilitation, GAR is demonstrating that economic development and environmental protection can go hand-in-hand. We will continue to call for and support change across Indonesia and the industry to achieve sustainable palm oil”, said Agus Purnomo, Managing Director of Sustainability and Strategic Stakeholder Engagement at GAR.
GAR will collaborate with environmental consultancy Malaysian Environmental Consultants (MEC) to rehabilitate the peat area and will immediately start work on restoring the peatland’s hydrology and water-table to reduce the risk of fire. Consultations will also be carried out with the local community to involve them in joint efforts to protect the area.
GAR’s updated policy has been integral in the decision by respected environmental organisation, The Forest Trust (TFT), to re-engage with GAR on its upstream work. The two organisations will now work together to ensure the success of the GSEP.
Hilary Thompson from TFT said: “We are pleased to see the progress GAR has made in the implementation of its sustainability policy across its upstream plantation operations. We look forward to helping them realise their recommitment to being a leader in sustainable palm oil”.
The GSEP reflects the challenges and five years of experiences of driving sustainable change on the ground and was developed in consultation with leading NGOs including TFT. Applying to both upstream and downstream operations, the policy commits GAR to broadening the benefits of sustainable palm oil and will ensure 100% traceability to mills by the end of 2015.
The GSEP will further enhance GAR’s drive to tackle some of the economic causes of fire by providing funded alternative livelihood programmes to local communities. In addition to engaging local communities in the conservation effort, GAR will continue to help smallholders improve crop yields thereby further reducing the pressure on Indonesia’s forests.
About Golden Agri-Resources Ltd
Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) is one of the leading palm oil plantation companies with a total planted area of 484,221 hectares (including smallholders) as at 30 September 2015, located in Indonesia. It has integrated operations focused on the production of palm-based edible oil and fat.
Founded in 1996, GAR is listed on the Singapore Exchange since 1999 with a market capitalisation of US$2.9 billion as at 30 September 2015. Flambo International Limited, an investment company, is currently GAR’s largest shareholder, with a 50.35% stake. GAR has several subsidiaries, including PT SMART Tbk which is listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange since 1992.
GAR is focused on sustainable palm oil production. In Indonesia, its primary activities include cultivating and harvesting of oil palm trees; processing of fresh fruit bunch into crude palm oil (“CPO”) and palm kernel; merchandising and refining CPO into value-added products such as cooking oil, margarine and shortening. It also has operations in China and India including a deep-sea port, oilseeds crushing plants, production capabilities for refined edible oil products as well as other food products such as noodles.
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