Navigation Links
Less haze in Singapore as the cause becomes clearer and more complex
Date:7/8/2013

Small and large-scale farmers in Riau province, Sumatra, have been blamed for the recent choking smoke smothering Singapore and parts of Malaysia. But scientists in Indonesia have added a third category of 'mid-level entrepreneurs'. These entrepreneurs buy unregulated access to land for oil palm and clear it by burning, seemingly unrestrained by government.

Scientists at the World Agroforestry Centre, who have been studying land conversion in Sumatra, say they have identified this third group of local land investors who operate outside the government system, making them potentially more difficult to regulate.

These people acquire land under informal rules at village level, effectively sidestepping the Government land-use system. They bring in their own labour to clear the land for oil palm, regardless of the land's formal government status and in the absence of any permits to do so.

Policies and policing need to be adjusted to deal with the newly identified group if the annual fires and subsequent haze are to be reduced. Holding plantation companies accountable for the fires within their boundaries would help reduce the problem but not extinguish it.

About half of the fire 'hot spots' in Riau province are on land with legal permits for large-scale operations (industrial timber, oil palm and logging). The rest occur as part of illegal activities, in areas which have been slated for conservation or non-production.

These hot spots are mostly concentrated in three districts within Riau province. Some neighbouring districts with similar conditions have so far avoided the problem this year, which suggests that lessons might be learnt about governance.

The fire-haze episode straddling the Strait of Malacca in June 2013 has reignited a decades-long debate about responsibility. In the current debate, finger pointing still alternates between the small- and large-scale agricultural operators. The latter include companies with headquarters in Singapore and Malaysia, where the undesirable haze accompanies the financial returns on their investments.

Before 1998, the blame for starting the fires was put exclusively on smallholders' 'shifting cultivation' techniques, with large-scale plantations and development projects protected from any criticism by the government.

But the 1997/8 fires in Sumatra and the change of regime in Indonesia threw new light onto the debate and it became evident that burning was the cheapest option widely used by all farmers, whether on a small or large scale or on peat or mineral soils.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Meine van Noordwijk
m.vannoordwijk@cgiar.org
62-251-862-5415
World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Singapore research team identifies new drug target in deadly form of leukemia
2. First in the world - Singapore scientists discover genes responsible for cornea blindness
3. National Heart Centre Singapore develops worlds first human heart cell model
4. Singapore scientists find genes associated with glaucoma, a major cause of eye blindness
5. NUS launches new book on Singapores rainforests and new free digital nature archive
6. Made-in-Singapore H5N1 diagnostic kit -- detects all known strains of H5N1 virus with a single test
7. UCLA researchers find new clue to cause of human narcolepsy
8. Insecticide causes changes in honeybee genes, research finds
9. Gene mutations caused by a fathers lifestyle can be inherited by multiple generations
10. Powerful gene-editing tool appears to cause off-target mutations in human cells
11. Oldest record of human-caused lead pollution detected
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/20/2016)... , June 20, 2016 Securus Technologies, ... technology solutions for public safety, investigation, corrections and ... prisons involved, it has secured the final acceptance ... facilities for Managed Access Systems (MAS) installed. Furthermore, ... facilities to be installed by October, 2016. MAS ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... -- Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is proud to announce the introduction ... to make sure the right employees are actually signing in, and to even control ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/3/2016)... LONDON , June 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... Transport Management) von Nepal ... ,Angebot und Lieferung hochsicherer geprägter Kennzeichen, einschließlich ... weltweit führend in der Produktion und Implementierung ... an der Ausschreibung im Januar teilgenommen, aber ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016   Boston Biomedical ... novel compounds designed to target cancer stemness pathways, ... been granted Orphan Drug Designation from the U.S. ... of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer. ... designed to inhibit cancer stemness pathways by targeting ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 A person commits a crime, and the ... track the criminal down. An outbreak of foodborne ... Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence to track down the bacteria ... far-fetched? It,s not. The FDA has increasingly used a complex, ... foodborne illnesses. Put as simply as possible, whole genome sequencing ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. ... test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI ... stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- The Biodesign Challenge (BDC), a university competition that asks ... systems and biotechnology, announced its winning teams at the ... York City . The teams, chosen ... MoMA,s Celeste Bartos Theater during the daylong summit. Keynote ... of architecture and design, and Suzanne Lee , ...
Breaking Biology Technology: