Toying with Indonesia's Deforestation

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Toying with Indonesia’s Deforestation
Andrew Wirawan
Introduction to Environmental Studies
April 2014

Introduction Indonesia is one of the world’s most forested countries with a wide variety of forest types. These forests are rich in biodiversity and unsurprisingly are an important livelihood source for a great number of people. Somewhere between 6 million and 30 million Indonesians are estimated to be directly dependent on forests (Sunderlin et al. 2000). As Indonesia is a developing country, the government is highly dependent on the forestry sector, as well as forestry-related sectors such as agriculture, estate crops, mining and logging. Consequently, during Indonesia’s history, its forests have been continually exploited, meaning deforestation and forest degradation have been inevitable. This paper will emphasize on deforestation caused by various world famous toy manufacturers, such as Mattel, Disney, Hasbro and Lego. The usage of MTH (Mixed Tropical Hardwood) in their packaging means rainforest clearance in Indonesia, since MTH is only pulped at commercial scales in Indonesia, mainly by APP (Asia Pulp & Paper). Not only deforestation is caused, but this deforestation is also pushing critically endangered wildlife like Sumatran tigers toward extinction and making climate change worse.

The Producer: APP APP or Asia Pulp & Paper is one of the largest pulp and paper companies in the world. APP has its roots since the 1970s, and with the founder’s close relation to Indonesia’s former president Soeharto, APP’s access to be the pioneer in Indonesia’s pulping industry was very promising. Now, with 14 major companies in Indonesia and China, APP has a current annual combined pulp, paper, and packaging-grade capacity of more than 18 million tons per year, and market its products to more than 120 countries across six continents. Over the years,…...

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