14 Apr 2005

Huge dollar cost put on environmental destruction caused by logging in Papua

8:45 pm on 14 April 2005

An environmental group says logging in the Indonesian province of Papua is costing the Jakarta Government more than three billion US dollars a year.

The Jakarta-based arm of Conservation International says most logging has shifted to Papua because forests in Java and Sumatra have been exhausted.

The group' spokesman, Agustinus Wijayanto, says logging in Papua is more environmentally damaging than in other provinces because it is estimated to contain 50 percent of Indonesia's biodiversity.

Environmental activists have claimed recently hat timber smuggling from Papua to China is the world's largest logging racket for a single timber species.