New study reveals impact of Indonesian forest loss

Deforestation in just one province on Indonesia's Sumatra island produces enough greenhouse gases to rival key industrial nations, environmental group WWF said on Wednesday.

The province of Riau alone emits more carbon than the Netherlands, the report said, as forests are cleared for pulp, paper and palm oil and carbon-rich peatlands are degraded.

The province lost 42,000 square kilometres or 65% of its forests in the past 25 years, it said.

"Forest loss and degradation and peat decomposition and fires are behind average annual carbon emissions equivalent to 122% of the
Netherlands’ total annual emissions," WWF said.

The rapid destruction of Riau’s forests was also helping to kill off the province’s endangered tigers and elephants, the group said.

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