Updated 1/10/2014: Banana Republic Indonesia Folds to Palm Oil Again: Greed, Corruption And Consumer Culture Conspire To Destroy Environment

The verdict was correct, we do not destroy the environment through converting peat swamp forest into palm oil plantation.” —  PT Kallista Alam attorney.

[PLEASE NOTE:  The below is NOT from my blog.  It’ from endoftheicoons.wordpress.com, a conservation group, typos and all, god love ’em.]

20120403-072812.jpg

Sadly, it’s a 19th and 20th century tale, repeating over and over into the 21st century. Greed, corruption and consumer culture wins out over the environment.

If there were any doubt, Indonesia proves it’s truly a banana republic. The court tasked with hearing this Walhi litigation has tossed out the case, basically saying that the plaintiffs haven’t exhausted all remedies, suggesting mediation with these cruel, heartless, greedy monsters is the only option for now. Walhi plans on appealing to a higher court. Unfortunately, it might be too late. The Tripa orangs will be gone by year’s end according to environmental NGOs on the ground.

What’s enraging is that the lawyers for PT Kallista Alam actually have the balls to claim that the palm oil giant was all but legally vindicated in its “permitted” actions. Liars. And they conspired with so-called “Green Governor” Irwandi Yusuf, who sold out his people and land for a little tribute. There’s a special place in hell reserved for traitors to humanity and the earth like this.

Especially galling is that the court acknowledged the permit for conversion of 1,605 ha of Tripa’s Peat Swamp Forest was inside the protected Leuser Ecosystem!

And taking a page from the “tobacco doesn’t cause lung cancer” book, here’s the line of bullshit the palm oil attorney spewed-forth with a straight face (and money in-hand), “The verdict was correct, we do not destroy the environment through converting peat swamp forest into palm oil plantation” – PT. Kallista Alam Lawyer Firman Azwar Lubis.

Yeah, torching habitat and slaughtering innocents for life-sucking palm oil plantations is just one big motherfucking environmental Eden, isnt it?  See above photo.

Statement from the Walhi attorneys:

http://endoftheicons.wordpress.com/2012/04/04/press-release-aceh-judge-slammed-over-indonesian-courts-inability-to-make-a-just-ruling-over-simple-legal-case/

Here’s a good summary in the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/indonesia-court-rejects-lawsuit-brought-by-conservationists-to-stop-development-of-peat-swamps/2012/04/03/gIQAchzbsS_story.html

More info from Sydney Morning Herald:

http://www.smh.com.au/environment/conservation/indonesian-court-backs-palm-oil-company-over-orangutans-and-carbon-storage-20120403-1wau2.html

Boycott palm oil!

http://www.saynotopalmoil.com/

UPDATED 5/25/2012:  Looks like a bit of sanity bubbles to the surface of the Indonesian toilet bowl of palm oil/government collusion and corruption.  Thanks to worldwide outcry, the government has re-listed certain parts of forestland on the moratorium maps.  YAY!  But nothing’s for certain in that banana republic.  (Not that we’re getting any NEW land added, just old land rightfully reinstated that was removed by that criminal Irwandi Yusuf.)  And it took worldwide attention to do it.  KEEP IT UP!

Here’s the link to a story:

http://blogs.wsj.com/searealtime/2012/05/24/orangutan-habitat-under-protection-after-outcry/

UPDATED 1/10/2014:  Well some great news — That heartless, soulless, greedy palm oil company PT Kallista Alam was found liable and sentenced to enormous fines.  Is this the turning point in preserving scarce habitat for critically endangered species?

In a precedent-setting case, an Indonesian court has found a palm oil company  guilty of violating environmental laws and ordered it to pay $30 million in  fines and reparations for clearing an area of protected peat forest that is a  stronghold for endangered orangutans in Indonesia’s Aceh Province.

In a  ruling handed down Wednesday, the Meulaboh district court concluded that PT  Kallista Alam illegally cleared and burned forest within the the protected Tripa  peat swamp in northwestern Sumatra. Senior Judge Rahmawati SH ordered the  company to pay 114.3 billion rupiah ($9.4 million) in compensation and 251.7  billion rupiah ($20.6 million) to restore damaged areas.

Read more at http://news.mongabay.com/2014/0109-aceh-tripa-court-decision.html#HSlgaT6XLfzUVE6v.99

0629tripafire

But as a lawyer I know that while a judgment is one thing, collecting is another:

While the developments in Aceh are headline-grabbing, there are still questions  whether the judgments will be ultimately enforced. Courts have levied tens  of billions of dollars in fines against logging, pulp and paper, mining, and  palm oil companies in Sumatra in recent years, but only a tiny fraction of the  penalties have ever been paid. Cases may be held up for years by appeals or  quietly dropped. Prosecutors are shuffled between agencies, companies change  names and laws shift.

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3 Responses to Updated 1/10/2014: Banana Republic Indonesia Folds to Palm Oil Again: Greed, Corruption And Consumer Culture Conspire To Destroy Environment

  1. Sheez, I am beginning to believe we are barreling toward a global apocalypse. We’re taking hits—–severe hits on every ecosystem and it appears we’re heading toward a biosphere apocalypse. Dang, I hate being this pessimistic.

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