Javan rhinos: is the Indonesian government lying? misleading? or being straight with the world.

It appears that the counters of the Javan rhino, have continued to count animals which have not been seen for years. Given how much poaching has been going on, this seems much more than simply misleading.

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 Unfortunately, this counting issue, takes the Javan rhino from a species which is recovering at an impressive rate, to a species which might disappear within a decade. In the latest count 3 rhino were included, which are known to have died back in 2019.

According to the official numbers, in 2011, when the cameras were installed there were 35 rhino, and that number has climbed steadily to a current number of roughly 72.


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Half of plantations in Indonesia’s palm oil heartland are illegal

I wrote in February about how an assessment had found that 20% of palm oil plantations were illegal (to read click here). This latest assessment suggests that in its heartland, half are illegal. Riau province is this heartland. Illegal plantations within this area cover an area almost as large as Hawai, and hosts more than half of the illegal plantations in the whole of Indonesia.

These illegal plantations are also not all owned by small players, with some of the biggest names in palm oil on the list. The government is suggesting 3 years to get retrospective permission.

The problem with this, is that it is essentially permission by the back door. If companies know that they will eventually get permission, there is a high incentive to break the law.

Furthermore, if these areas were designated for coservation, we need to find areas of similar importance to replace them


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