This week, fires in Indonesia reached levels that match last year’s haze crisis across Southeast Asia. Many of these fires are concentrated on peat soils, which are rich in carbon and especially harmful to human health and the environment when burned. Last year, haze from these fires reach Singapore, and even spurred the Singaporean government to introduce a bill penalizing the companies responsible for the haze.
Global Forest Watch, a new real-time tracking tool we featured in our last update, has identified that half of this burning is occurring on land owned by pulp, logging, and palm oil companies. Global Forest Watch has also identified the plantations and companies responsible, many of which belong to the Sinar Mas group.
We predict that the announcement of these fires could create financial repercussions not only for the companies responsible, but also for those buying from them. Major commodity traders that could be exposed to fires, pollution, and forest destruction in their supply chains include IOI, Cargill, and Bunge. For more data on the fires, please see the latest from the World Resources Institute: http://www.wri.org/blog/fires-indonesia-spike-highest-levels-june-2013-haze-emergency.