Whilst it may seem like there is no clear way to solve this complex issue, thankfully the Indonesian government has recently taken steps to lower the risk of forest fires. Last week the countries president Joko Widodo introduced new policies to try and prevent the fires from happening again. He announced that Indonesia needs to stop allowing development on peatlands, meaning that if it is strictly enforced fewer fires would be created due to fewer sections of rainforest being set alight to clear for farmland. Widodo also stated that he was pursuing a "one map initiative." This would clarify land ownership throughout Indonesia and resolve conflicts which are already taking place over who is allowed to profit from the land. These conflicts are often the cause of the fires, so by eliminating this as a problem the likelihood of fires being as commonplace is drastically reduced.
The fires in Indonesia this year have claimed lives, both human and animal, and unless these changes are implemented and the attitudes of people in the country start to adjust to what is needed, things will never change. The government has begun to tackle the problem, and we need to hope for the residents of Indonesia, both those causing the fires and those who are suffering from them, that they follow through on their plans and make the changes required now.
Thankfully the fires around Samboja Lestari are extinguished now and the Orangutans are safe, but the Sanctuary is still recovering. They need your help, so if you can donate to aid their recovery then please do just that! If you want to visit the Samboja Lestari Centre and help with the rehabilitation of the Orangutans who reside there, then you can do so by visiting the project site and finding out more information here ! Help by volunteering now!