Greenpeace Report Links Asia Pulp and Paper, Major Brands to Rainforest Destruction

JAKARTA/SAN FRANCISCO—July 06, 2010—A new Greenpeace report is said to show how global brands are fueling climate change and pushing Sumatran tigers and orangutans towards the brink of extinction by using paper made from Indonesian rainforest destruction. The report, “How Sinar Mas is Pulping the Planet,” traces the connection from Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), the paper subsidiary of the Sinar Mas group, to major international brands.

Walmart, one of the brands cited, issued the following statement in response:

“We were surprised Greenpeace would single us out in their press release as we have been in ongoing discussions with them and continue to partner on a variety of projects around the world. Walmart does not support deforestation, and as Greenpeace’s report shows, our largest markets do not source product from APP, and in the remaining markets that do, we have taken the steps to stop development on private brand products with APP and are looking at what measures can be taken regarding branded products. Globally, we are committed to traceability in the timber supply chain, and we work closely with government, NGO and supplier partners to build a better, more transparent, and more sustainable supply system.”

Rolf Skar, Greenpeace senior forest campaigner, said, “Our new investigation shows Sinar Mas is selling paper products from rainforest and peatland destruction to major brands all over the world.”

The Greenpeace documents how Sinar Mas is “wreaking havoc” in two important rainforest areas on the Indonesian island of Sumatra: the Bukit Tigapuluh Forest Landscape and the Kerumantan peat forest. Bukit Tigapuluh is one of the last refuges for critically endangered Sumatran tigers and orangutans. Kerumutan’s carbon rich peatlands are a key defense against climate change; some Kerumutan peat is deeper than three meters and illegal to clear under Indonesian law. Despite this, APP uses the logs from these rainforest areas to feed its Sumatran based pulp mills, which export pulp and paper products worldwide.