EXPOSING THE SUBSIDENCE CRISIS
In 2015 Wetlands International commissioned Deltares, an independent science institute, to publish detailed studies on Sarawak’s Rajang delta (a coastal peatland of 850,000 hectares) and the Kampar peninsula on Sumatra (a peatland of 675,000 hectares).
The report confirmed that drainage-based land use of pulp wood and oil palm plantations in peatlands cannot be managed sustainably. Drained plantations inevitably suffer from severe land subsidence, prolonged flooding and eventually production loss. The report also provided evidence that fires only occurred in drained peatlands and therefore inside or near plantations.