UNESCO SUPPORTS PLAN TO MAKE IRIAN JAYA’S LORENTZ NATIONAL PARK AN INTERNATIONAL

admin's picture

PRESERVE

JAKARTA, Indonesia (September 1, 1999 – Antara/Indonesian Observer/Kabar Irian)---The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has agreed to sponsor a plan to make Lorentz National Park in Irian Jaya an international preserve.

The head of the local Department of Education and Culture, Sudjud, told Antara yesterday in Jayapura, the agreement to make the park an international one, had been reported by UNESCO to President Habibie by facsimile on Monday.

UNESCO also called for the Indonesian Government to make a solemn promise to protect the park from any destruction by illegal loggers, or fires after it has been inaugurated as an international park.

UNESCO took this decision following the results of field research on the flora and fauna conducted by its own expert team.

Additionally, the team held a special meeting with Governor Freddy Numberi, local NGOs and public figures to discuss the urgency of conserving the park, to protect its endangered species.

The park measures 200,000 hectares and was categorized as a national park in 1997, based on a decree by the Forestry Minister.

It is situated between Jayawijaya, Mimika and Puncak Jaya, the highest mountaintop in Indonesia, where there is eternal snow.

The plan for the area to be an international park will be discussed at a meeting in Paris in November.

Jajawijaya local government officials said that although the park has various rare species to be conserved, so far the Forestry Minister had not appointed any institution to officially guard or conserve the park.

"We have prepared a proposal for the minister so that the park will have an institutional body managing it, but it is still being processed by the ministry’s officials and we do not know yet when the decision will be made," Sudjud added.

"I don’t know who will be responsible if the park is damaged. In previous times it was polluted by waste from mining activity, but no one took any action," he said.

The park has various kinds of fauna and flora, and is economically valuable.

KABAR IRIAN ("Irian News")

Website: http://www.irja.org/

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment