Lebak to receive award for Green Indonesia Program

"Now we are down to just 11,443 hectares."
Lebak, Banten (ANTARA News) - Lebak regency in Banten province has been nominated to receive an award for its Green Indonesia Program, under which one billion trees were successfully planted in the regency.

"The award will be presented by Vice President Budiono during the `National Day for Loving Flowers and Animals` on November 5," Head of Lebak Forestry and Plantation Service Imam Riswahayadin said here on Thursday.

"The nomination came along because the target of the program was not only achieved but also exceeded, due to which a lot of deforested land has been reforested, he explained.

"Back in 2004, Lebak had 36,000 hectares of deforested land. And now we are down to just 11,443 hectares," Riswahayadin added.

The Green Indonesia Program was successful because of the joint effort of the government and the local community.

Riswahayadin stated that the Lebak regency administration had implemented a number of reforestation programs, which involved the participation of the local community.

The locals actively took part in the plantation program because it contributed to their income, he added.

"We always call on people to plant trees, particularly albizia trees. These trees provide the maximum potential benefits and income for the locals if the plantation is sustained for 5-6 years," Riswahayadin explained.

The government has expressed hope that its One Billion Indonesian Trees (OBIT) movement would surpass the initial target of planting 6 million seeds.

The seeds have been provided free of cost to local people across 28 districts in an effort to preserve the natural environment of Indonesia.

"We will continue to promote the plantation movement in our forest and land conservation efforts," Riswahayadin said. ***3***



(UU.J010/B/KR-BSR/B/H-YH) 11-10-2012 16:33:06