14 Mar 2006

Greenpeace battles to save the ancient forests of Indonesia's Papua

8:59 pm on 14 March 2006

The Greenpeace flagship, Rainbow Warrior, sailed into the Indonesian province of Papua for the first time today as part of a global campaign to help protect the world's last ancient forests.

The Pacnews agency reports that Greenpeace is on a mission to protect the Paradise Forests, the last ancient forests in Asia-Pacific, from illegal and destructive logging.

It is also launching an eco-forestry programme in Papua to offer community-based forest management as an alternative to large-scale, industrial logging.

Emmy Hafild of Greenpeace Southeast Asia says the Paradise Forests of Asia Pacific are brimming with unimaginable diversity of life.

But she says the forests and the life they support are being destroyed faster than any other on Earth, driven by demand for timber in Europe, U.S., Japan and China.

Scientists from Conservation International recently discovered a 'Garden of Eden' in Papua 's Foja Mountains, an area untouched by man and full of new species.