Greenpeace Southeast Asia

Notes from the top (of a crane)…. by Jenny Tuazon

Filipino Greenpeace activist Joel has spent more than 9 hours on top of a crane in the port of a massive pulp facility in Riau.  Earlier, his team, along with 10 other activists shut down the entire export facility of the mill owned by APP and parent company Sinar Mas, for seven hours.

We were able to speak with Joel while he was up on the crane.  Here’s what he had to say:

I’m here on the crane and will stay here for as long as I can because I really want to help.  This gigantic facility is destroying Indonesia’s forest and causing climate change.  I think we should all do something about this, climate change affects us all. We’ve recently just had what’s probably the two most devastating typhoons in the Philippines.  I know that I’m doing something that can help prevent that from happening again.

The town’s Chief of Police climbed up the crane earlier to talk to us and they told us they will swing the crane and that it will be very dangerous, and perhaps fatal, if we don’t go down from where we are. We told him that we’re staying.  We’re fighting for something, we’re fighting for the forests because we know that preserving it is a solution, and were here telling on world leaders that they can stop this destruction.

I hope other people all over the world will join us in defending Indonesia’s forests.  From the top of the crane I can see how companies like APP who owns this facility have actually decimated the peatland forests in this area.  Because we’re near the port,  we’ve also seen how much (and it’s a lot!) timber they’ve been hauling to this facility—and that’s just for today.  It would be nice if President Yudhoyono can see what we can see from the top of the crane. He should come up here and see it with his own eyes.

Lea Guerrero

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