Wildlife protection bodies in Australia and abroad have secured the management rights for two forestry concession blocks adjacent to the Bukit Tigapuluh National Park in Sumatra, Indonesia.
The blocks next to the national park area, known also as ‘Thirty Hills’, was secured in a landmark decision through a unique collaboration betwqeen The Orangutan Project (TOP), WWF- Indonesia and the Frankfurt Zoological Society.
President and founder of TOP, Leif Cocks, said the Orangutan Project had made a major and potent contribution in helping save endangered orangutans, Sumatran tiger and elephants, by forming the ecological alliance.
‘The outcome for this vital ecosystem has required a shift in the political thinking towards respecting and understanding the need for major concessions for the environment’, Cocks said.
Over the past few years, a broad base of support has gathered for the Thirty Hills ecosystem including the former president, local political leaders, the provincial governor, communities and indigenous people.
Efforts are also supported by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. The actor and environmentalist helped to bring global attention to Thirty Hills.
The announcement comes just in time for International Orangutan Day, celebrated on August 19.
TOP ambassadors include Zoe Foster Blake (Vic), Natasha Stott Despoja (SA/NSW), Bianca Dye (NSW), Cornelia Frances (NSW), AFL player Jarryd Roughead (Vic), Hockeyroo Georgia Nanscawen (WA), Ecochick.com Founder Lara Shannon (Vic).