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NORTH SUMATERA

SWEDISH INVESTORS EYEING NORTH SUMATRA’S WASTE MANAGEMENT SECTOR

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The North Sumatra Provincial Government's Secretary, Sabrina, spoke to Swedish investors in Medan on Wednesday (7/8/2019).

Greatindonesia.co.id, Medan – The Swedish Energy Agency and Business Sweden have expressed their keenness to invest in the waste management sector of the North Sumatra Province, the North Sumatra Provincial Government’s Secretary, Sabrina, said on Wednesday (7/8/2019).

Speaking to journalists after meeting with the representatives of the company here, Sabrina said, “The Swedish investors said North Sumatra has been potentially chosen as their investment destination. We are ready to work with them.”

The North Sumatra provincial government itself has planned to build a large landfill and is keen to adopt Japan’s style of managing its waste, Sabrina said.

“This waste management sector can later produce energy and other valuable products, including fertilizers,” she said.

According to Business Sweden’s consultant, Fuad Hasan, the Swedish investors were interested in investing or cooperating with related authorities in the waste management sector due to its huge potential.

“In Indonesia, the Swedish company has handled waste management in Sunter, North Jakarta,” said Hasan, who was accompanied by the Swedish Energy Agency’s Country Manager, Paul Westin, and Business Sweden’s Consultant, Farida, at the meeting.

The Swedish company is prepared to work with the North Sumatra Environment Agency in the waste management sector, he added.

Waste has become a common problem for lots of regional and provincial governments. In terms of plastic bags, some 9.8 billion plastic bags are used in Indonesia every year, and almost 95 percent of them end up as waste.

The total number of plastic straws used by Indonesians daily reaches some 93 million, an increase from nine percent in 1995 to 16 percent in 2018, according to the Indonesian Environment and Forestry Ministry.

In this regard, the West Java provincial government, for instance, has revealed its keenness to turn plastic waste into low-carbon fuels. West Java Governor, Ridwan Kamil, recently visited the United Kingdom-based Plastic Energy Limited.

At his meeting with the representatives of Plastic Energy Limited at their headquarters, he discussed issues related to an investment worth Rp3 trillion to turn plastic waste into diesel fuel. (ant)

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NORTH SUMATERA

MEDAN TERROR SUSPECTS PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO IS

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The North Sumatra Police chief Insp. Gen. Pol. Agus Andrianto.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Medan – At least 26 suspects of the terror attack at Medan City Police HQ, North Sumatra Province, have pledged allegiance to a Syria-based militant group IS, a high-ranking official stated here Monday (18/11/2019). The suicide-bombing attempt was aimed at announcing their presence following the death of IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi last month, the North Sumatra Police chief Insp. Gen. Pol. Agus Andrianto said.

“The suspects have pledged allegiance to IS’ al-Baghdadi or his successors, so they staged attacks to announce their existence to the militant group,” Andrianto said.

The IS-affiliated suspects, worked as a group, and they planned the terror attacks through some secret meetings, he explained. The police had overseen the group’s activities before they launched a suicide-bombing attempt at the Medan City Police HQ, according to him.

Related news: Densus 88 arrests 46 suspects after Medan suicide bombing

“Before they launched the attacks, our hands were tied. We could not just take them into custody and question the terror suspects,” he remarked.

The police were allowed to search and question the suspects after the terror attack, he explained. “According to preliminary probe, they might be responsible (for the suicide-bombing attempt),” Andrianto noted.

A suicide-bomb attack, allegedly conducted by a 24-year-male, identified by his initials as RMN, targeted the Medan Police HQ on Wednesday, November 13. It resulted in injuries to four police officers and two civilians, though there were no reports of any fatalities.

Shortly after the incident, the police searched the suspect’s house and questioned his wife and her parents. The police officers seized some pieces of evidence, including two green baskets containing dozens of arrows, a pole, and some documents at the private residence of the accused.

The police are currently on the lookout for the unidentified but elusive cleric. He was allegedly responsible for indoctrinating RMN for at least six months to turn him into an extremist.

Meanwhile, the police have detained at least 46 suspects for further questioning. (ran)

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NATIONAL

FOREST FIRES DRIVE SUMATRAN TIGER FROM THEIR HABITATS

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The Sumatran tiger is the only surviving tiger in the country, and the smallest of the five tiger subspecies in the world. In the 1970s.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Sumatera – This is because the land and forest fires had destroyed the habitat, so this species had fled. I hope that it would not be viewed as an enemy
Indonesia, home to the Sumatran tiger, joined celebrations on International Tiger Day, observed on July 25, to raise support for the conservation of tigers.
The Sumatran tiger is the only surviving tiger in the country, and the smallest of the five tiger subspecies in the world. In the 1970s, the number of Sumatran tigers had reached some 1,000, though the figure decreased to 800 by the 1980s. Currently, the population is believed to be between 400 and 600 tigers.

In earlier days, Indonesia was home to three tiger species, including the Bali tiger, which became extinct in 1940, and the Java tiger, declared extinct in the 1980s.
While environmentalists, experts and officials campaigned during Global Tiger Day, still, the few remaining Sumatran tigers have to struggle to survive, as Sumatra Island has been ravaged by hundreds of hotspots, similar to forest fires, since July 2019.

Riau Province on Sumatra Island has been the most affected by forest fires. Wildfires also broke out in the province’s Tesso Nilo, a 81,700-hectare national park, which is a habitat for critically endangered tigers and elephants.

A video of a tiger running near the fence of the Chevron facility in Siak District, Riau, went viral in early August 2019.

Head of the Riau BBKSDA (Natural Resource Conservation Office) Suharyono confirmed the receipt of information from Vice President External Affairs of Chevron Hasim M. Noor explaining that the video was taken by a security guard at Kilometer 5 of the eastern Trans-Sumatra road near Gathering Station (GS) facility 5 of Chevron in Minas.

It was the first time that a Sumatran tiger was found roaming near the oil facility in the morning, Suharyono stated.

“This is because the land and forest fires had destroyed the habitat, so this species had fled. I hope that it would not be viewed as an enemy,” he added.
The tiger exited the compound by scaling a two-meter-high fence.

He also confirmed that the Sumatran tiger is mature and healthy. The agency has sent a team to rescue the endangered species, Suharyono said.
He believes the tiger was headed to the Sultan Syarif Hasyim Forest Park, located some 12 kilometers from the GS 5 area.

Bonita was rescued from a plantation in Tanjung Simpang Village in Indragiri Hilir District on January 3, 2018, while Atan was removed from a residential area in Burung Island, also in the district on November 18, 2018.

In North Sumatra, a Sumatran tiger that had eaten a man and a goat last June was finally trapped and moved to West Sumatra’s Dhamasraya Sumatran Tiger Rehabilitation Center in July 2019.

“The Barumun Sumatran Tiger Sanctuary in Padang Lawas, North Sumatra, can no longer accommodate additional tigers, as an adult male tiger named Monang, adult tigress called Gadis and two 10-month-old cubs are living there,” Irzal Azhar, head of the North Sumatra Nature Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA), said.

The tiger was trapped on July 16, 2019, in Hutabargot Village, Sosopan Sub-district, Padang Lawas District, North Sumatra. The Sumatran tiger’s right leg was possibly injured in a trap.

The trap was set by the North Sumatra BKSDA, in cooperation with the Padang Lawas district authorities in May 2019, following several incidents.
Forest fires often compel Sumatran tigers to leave their habitats and head further away in search of food.

“In case of a forest fire, an effort must be made to rescue tigers immediately,” said Director General for Ecosystem and Natural Resource Conservation of the Environmental and Forestry Ministry Wiratno.

The Ministry will focus on the preservation of Sumatran tigers by constructing a tiger rehabilitation center in Riau, Wiratno added.

Injured tigers, after being released, will be fitted with GPS satellite collars to monitor their movements before being released into the wilderness.
Indonesia remains in a state of emergency because of the use of animal traps. Poachers have set up some 3,000 traps, including for Sumatran tigers in conservation forest areas.

The Ministry plans to organize a campaign against animal traps and has appealed to companies to remove their traps. It also urged people to stop the hunting of boars, which tigers feed on.

In the meantime, data from the Directorate General of Natural Resources and Ecosystem Conservation show that over 50 percent of the population of endangered animals are found outside conservation areas, both in timber estates and protected forests.

Based on an analysis, the population of Sumatran tigers in their natural habitat reaches only 603 in 23 habitat enclaves, according to Wiratno.
However, their existence is threatened due to poaching, illegal trade and loss of habitat due to land conversion or climate change.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) put Sumatran tiger on the Red List of Threatened Species in 1996.
The comprehensive adoption of a cultural approach is also deemed necessary to preserve Sumatran tigers surviving in the wilderness.

In the past, the Sumatran people, such as those in Kerinci, Jambi Province, lived in stilt houses in harmony with many species, including tigers, according to Hizbullah Arief, communication and reporting staff of the Tiger Project of the UNDP Sumatra Tiger Management Unit, speaking in Batam, Riau Islands Province, on the sidelines of a discussion on Sumatran tiger preservation efforts last July.

The people had applied local wisdom and led a life in harmony with the environment, he pointed out.

Sumatran tigers are still held in high regard, as are called “datuk” and “ompunk,” among other names commonly used to honor elderly people. Moreover, several Sumatrans also believe in the existence of “human tigers” and tigers that protect sacred places.

Legendary stories about tigers could help support the preservation of the Sumatran tiger species. (frd)

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NORTH SUMATERA

GOVERNMENT RADIES RP2.4 TRILLION FOR LAKE TOBA DEVELOPMENT

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Minister of Public Works and Public Housing Basuki Hadimuljono visited Lake Toba's tourism area in North Sumatra on Sunday (28/7/ 2019).

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – The government, through the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing, has prepared some Rp2.4 trillion for the development of Lake Toba as one of the National Tourism Strategic Areas by 2020.

“We already have a development program that will be implemented in Lake Toba from 2019 until 2020,” Public Works and Public Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono remarked at a meeting in Parapat, North Sumatra, on Sunday (28/7/2019).

The minister delivered the statement during his visit to the Lake Toba area on July 28-31, 2019.

The minister highlighted the government’s steady efforts to refine and change the “face” of Lake Toba in Silangit, Toba Samosir, Simalungun, and other related areas.

Furthermore, President Joko Widodo is scheduled to visit the Lake Toba area.

Hadimuljono stated that the ministry will continue its work to attract investors to invest in some basic infrastructure development programs, such as highways, that has been done in the Kaldera tourism area.

Hadimuljono highlighted some infrastructure development to be conducted in the Lake Toba area, such as gate expansion, road repair, as well as creation of public spaces in the Port of Ajibata.

The Public Works and Public Housing Ministry has also continued to support the acceleration of infrastructure development in North Sumatra Province to encourage economic equity and improve the welfare of the local community.

During the 2015-2019 period, the ministry had built several new infrastructure to support water and food security, clean water supply, and arrangement of tourism areas on the shores of Lake Toba.

“Infrastructure development is not only conducted to encourage economic development in urban areas and other developed regions but also to develop rural areas and borders to reduce social, economic, and regional disparities,” Hadimuljono explained.

The ministry had also built the Lausimeme Dam in Deli Serdang District. The dam construction work is being carried out in two projects. The first project starts from the preparation, construction of the entrance, main dam, and other works. The second project encompasses road relocation works, evasion buildings, overflow buildings, taking buildings, hydromechanical, and facility buildings.

The ministry is currently widening the Tano Ponggol channel on Lake Toba in Samosir District to provide opportunities for tourists to explore Samosir Island aboard larger boats.

Tano Ponggol is the only land access to get to Samosir Island in the middle of Lake Toba. The Tano Ponggol Channel has an average width of 25 meters in shallow conditions, and in some parts, it has narrowed to just eight meters.

Hence, the Tano Ponggol Channel has been currently widened to 100 meters along 1,476 meters. Furthermore, a five-meter-deep excavation is being conducted to get the base elevation of the groove at 807m asl (Above Sea Level).

Furthermore, the arrangement of Tomok area in Samosir District was also conducted to support the development of Lake Toba as an international-level National Tourism Strategic Area (KSPN).

The development work of the Tomok area, from July to December 2017, cover the arrangement of the Batak Museum area in Tomok and provision of supporting infrastructure, such as toilets and temporary landfills. The budget to develop Tomok reached Rp3.4 billion. (yas)

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