Peatland Restoration Prevents Forest Fires, says Jusuf Kalla

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  • Indonesia Vice President Jusuf Kalla. REUTERS/Beawiharta

    Indonesia Vice President Jusuf Kalla. REUTERS/Beawiharta

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaIndonesian Vice President M. Jusuf Kalla said peat land restoration in several islands of Indonesia can prevent forest fires that could cause haze disaster.

    "The most important thing to prevent haze disaster is peat land restoration. The effort is needed to be done because burnt peat land creates more smokes than perennials forest," Kalla said on Sunday.

    The government will discuss peat land restoration efforts with some experts to achieve a national agreement on peat land management.

    He added, Indonesia will also conduct international conference on peat land management as a prevention of haze disaster.

    Kalla said Indonesia need to utilize appropriate technology to manage peat land.

    "The conference is being prepared by Coordinating Minister of Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan as well as Environment and Forestry Ministry. The conference is important to be held to achieve national agreement on peat land management," Kalla said.

    Additionally, Kalla said haze disaster also could potentially trigger long term illnesses.

    "The haze inhaled by children can potentially trigger long term illnesses. Thus we want to solve haze disaster through peat land restoration," the Vice President said.

    The government have taken various efforts to extinguish forest fires such as by deploying thousands of soldiers to conventionally extinguish fires by spraying waters to the hotspots and create channel partition.

    Additionally, the government also conducts weather modification by pouring salts or sodium chloride to some clouds that have water vapor to trigger rain.

    Kalla has initiated an Istisqa prayer (asking for rain) as an Islamic effort to ask for rain in some areas in Indonesia.