(wwf.or.id)-- In July 2008, WWF Indonesia and WARSI traveled through Sumatra’s provinces of Riau and Jambi. They visited a group of the local tribe of Orang Rimba in the buffer zone of Bukit Tigapuluh National Park. Only about 3000 members of this tribe survive mostly in Jambi.
The Orang Rimba report that in about the year 2000, companies began to seriously destroy their forests so they no longer could collect rattan and resins to sustain their livelihood.
They were forced to begin converting small patches of forest to rubber, corn and rice to generate food and some cash to live. Palm oil production is one of the serious threats to their survival as oil palm companies are destroying Orang Rimba forests.
But much greater threats for the Orang Rimba lie ahead as pulp and paper companies are getting ready for large scale conversion of their forests.
Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) built a huge logging corridor connecting their two giant pulp mills in Jambi and Riau right along the Bukit Tigapuluh National Park, preparing its clearing of these old forests for pulp wood monocultures, destroying the region’s biggest remaining block of forest, home to the Orang Rimba, tigers, elephants and orang utan.
APP already controls or aims to control a fifth of Jambi Province, already having converted many of its remaining forest blocks and now getting ready to cut down even the last ones remaining.
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