President Joko Widodo Asks to Develop Canal Blocking at Forest Fire Areas
Date 31 Oktober 2015
After visiting free smoke class at Sekolah Dasar Negeri 8 (Elementary School), Pahandut, Palangkaraya, President Joko Widodo and First Lady Ibu Iriana as well as their entourage, continued their trip to Pulang Pisau Regency, Central Kalimantan, on Saturday (31/10) afternoon, to visit canal blocking project in peat areas.
Entering Pulang Pisau, the President and his entourage were welcomed by rain which made the air more fresh. Then, they immediately headed to Canal Blocking Making post which was made to handle the haze disaster.
This canal was made a month ago, on 26 September. One month ago, when I came here, the peatland was burning. There was no water, thus the peatland is easily burned. Now, we have this canals, passing through Kahayan river. That is why the water never runs out, President Joko Widodo said to the journalists.
Since the water never runs out, the President added, it will seep to the peatland. Therefore, the peatland will not easily be burned. The President thought that after one month we can see the system, the blocking and the retention basin. The retention basins have been made in all locations that are vulnarable to fire.
President Joko Widodo asks to make canal and retention basin in all regencies and provinces. This canal will be always made; it wont stop. Although it rains, the project will not stop. The canal will be made in all provinces that are vulnarable to fire, particularly in peat areas, the President said.
Besides the canal, President Joko Widodo also talked about preventive action. If the fire occurs in one area, it must be immediately put out. Do not wait until the fire happens in other areas. This is the task of local governments. If it is hard, then asks a help from central Government, the President said.
The last, President Joko Widodo reminded the importance of law enforcement. 254 institutions and invididuals have been named as suspects, and the number is now increasing to 270.
Previously, a month ago, President Joko Widodo had visited that area, when the haze was so dense. Then, that area was developed as a pilot project for land and forest fires management by making canal blocking.
On that project, a 300 meters-primary canal was built in 28 spots with 1.5 meters width and 3 meters depth. Meanwhile, the length of secondary canal was 7 kilometers, with 4 meters width and 6 meters depth and were placed on the right and left of the road. The length of the tertiary canal between retention basin was 7 kilometers with 1 meter width and 1 meter depth.
Big retention basins sized 20x30x6 meters was built in two spots and small basins sized 10x10x3 meters were built in 28 spots. The function of the basin is to collect the water so that the canal will not dry on dry season. The material used for blocking are sand and soil.
Also accompanying President Joko Widodo and First Lady Ibu Iriana on that visit were Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Luhut B. Pandjaitan, Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Puan Maharani, Minister of Education and Culture Anies Baswedan, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya, Minister of Public Works and Public Housing Basuki Hadimuljono, Presidential Chief of Staff Teten Masduki, and Head of National Afency for Disaster Management (BNPB) Willem Rampangilei.
After visiting Pulang Pisau, the President and his entourage immediately headed to Tjilik Riwut Airport, Palangkaraya, and went back to Jakarta using the Presidential Plane. (MMB/YM/Naster)