Conservation News: Asia’s Last Great Rainforest

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Residents say that they used to be able to drink the water from their local rivers

from the Jakarta Post

In February 2007 the governments of Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei signed the Heart of Borneo Declaration — an agreement to protect 22 million hectares at the center of the island from environmental degradation.

According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), which initiated the declaration, the Heart of Borneo (HoB) area is “Asia’s last great rainforest”, which is home to 6 percent of the world’s biodiversity, contains the headwaters for 14 of Kalimantan’s 20 major rivers, provides “ecosystem services” to 11 million people and is “one of the planet’s richest treasure troves”.

A report on its environmental status released by WWF this month found the rate of deforestation there had increased since 2007, with 2 million hectares, or 10 percent of forest cover lost since the signing of the declaration.

This excerpt from a news article appeared in and is courtesy of the Jakarta Post and can be read in its entirety here.

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