Indonesia’s forests are some of the most biodiverse on the planet, home to between 10 - 15 percent of the world’s known plants, mammals, and birds. Despite this, in the last 50 years, more than 74 million hectares of rainforest have been lost here — an area twice the size of Germany. Drivers of deforestation in Indonesia vary from logging, agricultural expansion and operations like mining, and infrastructure expansion. However, by far the greatest threat to Indonesia’s forests comes from conversion of land to palm oil plantations - one of the main ingredients in our soaps, detergents, and makeup.
Deforestation shrinks the habitat of native species like orang-utans, and diminishes a source of shelter, food, and livelihood for millions of people. It’s also bad news for carbon emissions. Peatlands, such as those across Indonesia's lowland rainforests, store a whopping 35 billion tons of carbon. When bulldozed and replaced with plantations, thousands of tons of harmful carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere, contributing to greenhouse gases and increasing the risk of forest fires.