APP, a leading paper maker, has run into a lot of problems with its aggressive, environmentally controversial paper-pulp tree swaps in Yunnan and Hainan. Now it’s having a problem of another kind, fighting thugs that steal its trees. Translated by CDT from Green China magazine:
One night in July this year, some forest patrol officers in Hepu County (ÂêàÊµ¶) in Guangxi Province went on duty to protect eucalyptus trees from illegal loggers. They were descended upon by 30 unidentified people and many got injured after being beaten with wooden clubs at the end of double-barrel hunting guns.
This is not a stand-alone incident. Since the start of this year, forests in the county that belong to APP’s Jingui Forestry company (ÈáëÊ°ÇÊûó‰∏ö) have undergone increasingly aggressive unauthorized logging. With its eucalyptus trees hitting the harvest season, 4,000 mu of the forest farms were illegally cut.
As most of these cases are sporadic and small in scale, the county forestry bureau said it would be difficult to establish a case to investigate. And as the illegal loggers associate with local villagers or even gangsters, a crack down becomes more daunting. The company even called on the county party secretary to help with a strike-hard campaign against the unlicensed loggers, many of whom have guns. [Full Text in Chinese]
[Image: a detained truck that tried to steal trees out of APP’s farms, via sina.com.cn]