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Sarawak - Deforestation

Working on information supplied by the local Iban tribe I travelled to Sarawak to document illegal forest clearance practices by Malaysian timber companies. Using official documents we were able to determine that legal requirements for the logging concession where not being met. large amounts trees which were supposedly part of a managed and renewable agreement were being felled in order to make way for Palm Oil plantations.

The Iban’s ancestral land is also being affected, they are unable to grow their own crops and the rivers are becoming more and more polluted. Those Iban employed by the Malaysian timber companies have few employment rights and no freedom of association, they are told their lands are protected but instead they see them being continuously eroded.

During my time visiting with the Iban we visiting a number of long house communities to gain an insight of their culture and the many issues they face.

Using a drone and GPS we were able to ascertain the locations of deforested areas being affected by illegal exploitation. The Malaysian company who owns the logging concession for the affected area is also one of the principle suppliers of plywood to the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. In 2018 an official complaint was made to the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Committee incorporating some of the information on illegal working practices that we helped gather.

An aerial image of area 53 – Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039

An image of areas 72 & 74 – Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039

An aerial image of area 74 РZedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039

An aerial image of area 72 – Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039

Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039 Concession area map.

An Iban union organiser shares his experiences working for a Malaysian timer company.

An image of areas 72 & 74 – Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039

A video flyover of the concession areas showing how the forest has been cleared but the trees remain.

An arial image of area 53 – Zedtee SDN. BHD. PEC Ref. No. LPF0039