BALIKPAPAN – There are 340 oil palm plantation companies operating in East Kalimantan (Kaltim) province with a total plantation acreage of 2.5 million hectares. But unfortunately, only 72 companies managed to own the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) certificates with a total acreage of 520,000 hectares.
The Sustainable Plantation Communication Forum’s East Kalimantan (Kaltim) Office Head M Sabani said that besides the companies, only two smallholding plantations that had managed to get the ISPO certificates. “The data has shown that the ISPO certification in Kaltim is slowly implemented,” said.
According to him, the ISPO certification process was still hindered by the lack of understanding on the importance of ISPO among the stakeholders in the province. “It is also because the provincial government has not yet optimized its coordination and socialization on ISPO certification,” he said.
He asserted that the ISPO certification is part of the efforts to counter the negative campaigns launched by certain countries and international and national NGOS against the palm oil. The provincial government (Pemprov) of Kaltim should work harder to increase the ISPO certifications for the oil palm plantation companies.
Sabani said that the oil palm plantations in Kaltim have been continually increasing. The province saw a growth of 3.04 percent per year during the last five years. Its total palm plantations had increased from 1,090,106 hectares in 2015 to 1,228,138 hectares in 2019. Its production growth averaged at 14.89 percent per year during the last five years, from 10,812,893 tons in 2015 to 18,343,852 tons in 2019.
“The ISPO certification will certainly affect the economy of Kaltim. If the plantations are not managed according to the principles of sustainability, then they are potential to damage the environment and cause biodiversity loss,” he said.
He noted that actually Kaltim has been committed to implementing the green development since 2010 through the program of “Kaltim Green”, which was supported with the declaration of “Green Growth Compact Kaltim” in 2016.
Sabani pointed out that in realizing the target of green development, the local government had issued implementing regulations for a number of economic sectors, including the agriculture and plantation sectors as contained in the medium term development plan of Kaltim (RPJMD Kaltim) for 2018-2023. (*)
Source: PROKAL.CO | Featured image via greenpalm.org