The Ministry of the Environment and Forestry found that the company was planning to keep expanding pulpwood plantation in the Kampar Peninsula of Sumatra’s Riau province. The plan has been already refused back in October, due to illegal plantation expansion on peat in the Kampar Peninsula landscape. The ministry also carried out a ground inspection, discovering that business-as-usual practices have taken place in the concession’s peatlands, including new land clearing and canal development. The Ministry sent a letter to APRIL intimating to restore the plantation being developed, while the acacia that has already been planted and newly-developed canals closed.
The Ministry director general San Afri expressed his surprise at these operations by APRIL, considering that the pulp and paper giant is consistently promoting to the international community that its sustainability policy has included no peat development since early June 2015: “It turns out that APRIL is still carrying out business-as-usual practices, which actually violate its very own sustainability commitments. In fact, one of the director generals at the ministry was in attendance on behalf of the minister at the event at which APRIL launched its no peat development policy.” “The new pulpwood plantation being developed must be restored. This is the responsibility of the company. A letter to this effect will be sent tomorrow to the owner of APRIL,” San Afri Awang, Chairman of Peat Restoration Monitoring at the ministry, said to Foresthints.news. Furthermore, he added, acacia that has already been planted in the new pulpwood plantation must be