Stronger Healthcare Voice needed to tackle the Climate Crisis and Environmental Injustice in Southeast Asia

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Environmentalists have attributed the recent heavy floods in south of Indonesia to widespread deforestation for palm oil plantations and coal mines.

As an illustration, greenhouse gases (that can be found in burning of fossil fuels) cause global temperatures to increase rapidly and intensify hurricanes and typhoons [3]. Despite this known fact and the clear public health risks and costs of dirty air, as of January 2020, Indonesia has a total of 32,373 MW of operating coal plants and 11,840 MW-capacity in construction. South Kalimantan in particular, has 13 coal companies as of 2013 according to the provincial government data [4].

In addition, Dr. Raynaldy BP of Rise Southeast Asia Alliance for Health and Climate (Indonesia) [5], said that a big part of Bogor, West Java’s highlands were transformed into housing and recreational sites. When asked about the connections that gave way to these disasters, he shared that, “understanding the chain of disaster has never been so important as today since things don’t happen instantly. The floods and landslides were the results of active deforestation and housing projects.”



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