18 Apr 2005

Environmental group says PNG communities see no benefits from industrial logging

8:19 pm on 18 April 2005

The Papua New Guinea Eco Forestry Forum says there are better and smarter alternatives to industrial logging.

It says despite Government claims of the benefits brought by such logging, rural communities are left worse off when the timber companies move on.

The Forum spokesman Kenn Mondiai says 25 years of intensive logging have not brought the promised developments.

He says if schools and aid posts are built, they are substandard.

"What normally happens is the companies put in schools which are built from timber that is sawn without proper treatment and is put directly into the school buildings and aid posts, and after five, six, seven years is rotting away, because it does not conform to the standards required by the Department of Works."

The Forum says small scale sawmilling done by locals and downstream processing is the better alternative.