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The Jakarta Post | Hotli Simanjuntak and Ruslan Sangaji,

Banda Aceh/Palu | Archipelago | Wed, March 20 2013, 10:47 AM

Paper Edition | Page: 5

Institutions affiliated with the Aceh Spatial Planning Alliance have urged scientists and conservationists to push the Aceh provincial administration to amend the spatial planning bylaw (RTRW), which they say is potentially damaging and could reduce the region’s forests, threatening its biodiversity.

Aceh is regarded as having the largest biodiversity in Asia Pacific, especially with the Leuser Ecosystem, which is currently a giant laboratory for scientists from across the globe.

The region is also where many wildlife species can be found, such as the rhinoceros, Sumatran tiger, orangutan and elephant.

According to Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi) director TM Zulfikar, the Aceh RTRW is loaded with the interests of particular individuals and sacrifices the environment and sustainability of local communities living in the conservation area.

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