Seven villages in Jambi have officially joined the Fire-Free Village Program (FFVP) initiated by Asian Agri.
The new commitments bring the number of villages taking part in the scheme, which has successfully reduced forest fires since its launch in 2016, to 17.
The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding was attended by Dr Montty Girianna, Deputy Minister for Energy Management, Natural Resources and Environment, Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs of Republic of Indonesia, and Dr Agus Rizal, Head of Plantation Office of Jambi Province, as well as representatives from the local community.
The signing included renewed commitments from two villages which participated in 2016, Lubuk Lawas and Lubuk Bernai, and new members Tuo Sumay, Suo Suo, Semambu, Teriti, and Muara Sekalo.
“We are very proud and fully support the initiatives taken by villages to join the Asian Agri Fire-Free Village Program. This effort will certainly have a positive impact both on the villages and at the national level in terms of suppressing the emergence of hotspots in Indonesia,” said Dr Agus Rizal.
FFVP provides training, equipment and economic incentives to help prevent fire. In 2016, nine villages in Riau and Jambi reduced the area affected by fire from 13.75 hectares the year before to just 7.98 hectares.
“This commitment deserves the support of all parties because fire prevention is the responsibility of all of us, and the villagers play an important role in safeguarding the village environment in order to avoid a fire incident,” said Agus.
“I deeply appreciate the villages that are now incorporated into the Fire-Free Village Program, and this is a good example of beneficial partnership between communities, governments and companies that bring environmental benefits optimally and sustainably,” said Agus.
Sahrul Hasibuan, Regional Head of Asian Agri in Jambi Province, stated, “We are always ready to facilitate and develop villages that have a willingness to join the Free-Fire Village Program.”
Sahrul further explained that the program is aimed to increase public awareness that preventing fires requires a joint effort. “The Fire-Free Village Program provides knowledge and opportunities for villages to grow their economy, so that the incentives that will be given to villages could be utilized for the welfare of people.”
About Asian Agri:
Asian Agri is one of the leading private companies in Indonesia producing crude palm oil (CPO) since 1979 and employs around 25,000 people today. Since 1987, Asian Agri has been a pioneer of the Indonesian government’s Trans-National Government Migration (PIR-Trans) program. Today, the company manages 100,000 Ha of land and partners 29,000 smallholder families in Riau and Jambi who operate 60,000 Ha of palm oil plantation.
Asian Agri’s success in becoming one of the leading CPO companies has been acknowledged internationally with the ISO 14001 certification for all of its operations. Its Learning Institute in Pelalawan, Riau, as well as its nursery research center in Kampar, Riau are ISO 9001 certified. In addition, Asian Agri’s R&D Center in Tebing Tinggi has also obtained certification by the International Plant-Analytical Exchange at the WEPAL lab at Wageningen University in The Netherlands, for its high standards.
More than 86% of both owned plantations in North Sumatra, Riau & Jambi provinces & scheme smallholder plantations in Riau & Jambi provinces have been RSPO certified.
All plantations have also been ISCC-certified (International Sustainability & Carbon Certification), including plantation owned by smallholders. Palm oil mills and plantation in Buatan, Ukui, Soga, Tungkul Ulu, and Muara Bulian have been ISPO (Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil) certified.
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