APRIL Group Launches an Unprecedented Campaign to Contain Forest Fires

Forest fires can be extremely damaging to the environment, as well as to the efforts of any company operating in the palm oil industry in Indonesia. These are precisely some of the major reasons why APRIL Group (Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Ltd) has announced a “Fire Danger Period” between July the 1st and August the 31st 2015, as part of their comprehensive fire suppression plan.

Investing in Fire Management

Because forest fires can have a huge impact on plantation productivity, while affecting the environment negatively through the extension of smoke and haze, the reduction of soil nutrients and the increasing of soil erosion risks, APRIL has announced that the company will be completely committed toward preventing forest fires and illegal burning, while even avoiding the purchase of materials from those suppliers who condone unlawful burning.

The company has invested no less than $6 million to improve fire-fighting efforts in the area. This extensive investment is meant to support the suppression and prevention of forest fires, while also improving the focus on preventive education, so that local communities can learn more about the prevention process and the dangers of illegal burning.

APRIL’s Fire Management Plan

The fire management plan implemented by APRIL is a manifold effort for raising awareness regarding the reasons why forest fires need to be prevented, as well as the actions and training procedures necessary for adequate prevention.

Specialists are to work closely together with local villagers during the Fire Danger Period, implement new incentives and standards for engaging the community, and doubling their efforts and vigilance to spot and eliminate forest fires as soon as they occur.

As an additional initiative, APRIL has also implemented the “Fire Free Village, Fire Free Landscape” program geared to improve the local community’s knowledge and ability to respond in fire management situations.

With increased focus on village agricultural assistance, no burn village rewards, community awareness and air quality monitoring, APRIL is confident that the dangers and risks of uncontrolled fires can effectively be avoided.

APRIL’s Corporate Social Responsibility – In Line with Sukanto Tanoto’s RGE Group

With APRIL Group’s new initiative in halting all harvesting of natural forests for its endeavors in the pulp and paper industry in Indonesia, the company has once again drawn attention to its environmental and its corporate social responsibility.

Operating in line with the philosophy of the RGE Group (of which APRIL is a part of) set in place by Chairman Sukanto Tanoto – doing work that is genuinely helpful for the company, the community and the country – APRIL shows that it is a company dedicated to continue its streak of positive accomplishments achieved in the past few years.

Understanding CSR

APRIL’s Kerinci mill is a good example of a remarkable achievement that has brought prosperity not only to the company, but also to the local community and to the country, by improving the local industry to a great extent. All this is fully in line with Sukanto Tanoto‘s philosophy, focusing on the famous 3 Cs, and has drawn significant attention to the small town of Kerinci which in 1993 was a tiny village with only 200 inhabitants.

The RGE member managed to turn the tides in favor of the Kerinci community, building on the infrastructure, creating new jobs and building remarkable new opportunities for the local inhabitants, forming an unbreakable bond between APRIL and the growing Kerinci community.

Today, APRIL’s vital understanding of corporate social responsibility has paid off for everyone involved. The company managed to expand, while improving the livelihood and income opportunities of locals who previously could only earn a living from fishing.

APRIL’s Impressive Achievements

Throughout the 23 years since APRIL has been operating in Kerinci, they have managed to – both directly and indirectly – create more than 90,000 jobs and help over 1,000 households in becoming community farmers. Among their other achievements are also the provision of start-up capital for 128 businesses and the delivery of more than 17,000 scholarships.

With remarkable dedication, APRIL Group has proven that they are definitely a part of the solution to Indonesia’s difficult current situation. Through their constant effort toward sustainability and responsible innovation, the country’s economic, industrial and environmental future seems to be in very good hands.

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