By Gagandeep Ghuman
Published: March. 16, 2013
Greenpeace Canada is raising concerns over an Indonesian tycoon’s plan to use the Woodfibre site for a small scale LNG facility.
Billionaire Sukanto Tanoto’s energy company, Pacific Oil & Gas, recently announced the purchase of Woodfibre pulp mill to operate a ‘small-scale’ LNG facility.
Environmental watchdog Greenpeace says the environmental record of Tanoto’s logging company, APRIL, is far from perfect.
Shane Moffatt, a Toronto-based forest campaigner for Greenpeace, said Tanoto’s company was a ‘leading driver of deforestation’.
“Recent government data shows 60 per cent of the fibre supply to his main pulp mill is actually rainforest wood,” he said.
Moffatt said in 2012, APRIL planned to feed its Sumatran pulp mill by trashing another 60,000 hectares of rainforest – an area nearly the size of Singapore.
“As long as his company operates, the future also looks bleak for the rare Sumatran tiger, an excellent swimmer well-adapted to the rainforest,” Moffatt added.
“I would really question what his track record means for his Canadian plans,” he told the Province.
Greenpeace also released a map which shows areas where the company has recently trashed thousands of hectares of peatland forests.
Tanoto, however, seems to have accepted and learned from his past mistakes.
In an undated interview published on his website, Tanoto said he is working with international NGOs and conservationists to protect the rainforest and prevent illegal logging.
“We’re also constantly trying to expand the number of tree species we use on our plantations to maintain bio-diversity,” Tantoto said.
Pacific Energy Corp has its head office in Jakarta.
In a statement, the officials said they are in the early stage of planning, analysis and community engagement.’