Permata Hijau understood that the protection of the environment is the heart of all sustainable development. This is why we have formulated and implemented the following strategies:
Forests are one of the most important biome in the world and provide many important services to the environment:
Permata Hijau fully appreciates the importance of conserving forest and therefore has committed to zero deforestation. Permata Hijau had not cleared any new land for oil palm cultivation since early 2000s. However, if we ever need to clear new land for new oil palm development, we will engage qualified and registered assessors to conduct HCV-HCS assessments and will plan our expansion following recommendations outlined in our HCV-HCS assessments.
Zero New Planting on Peat
Peatland is one the largest reservoir of carbon in the world. Although they only occupy 3% of the world’s land area, peatlands contain about 25% of the world’s soil carbon. Peatlands also support a diverse and unique biodiversity and play an important role in the water management of the area.
Permata Hijau believes that peatland should be protected and has committed to zero peat development. We will not develop new oil palm plantation on peat (following the Indonesian Interpretation of RSPO’s definition of peat) regardless of depth. Our existing plantation on peat will be managed in accordance with RSPO Best Management Practice (BMP).
Biodiversity and High Conservation Area (HCV) Protection and Conservation
Permata Hijau understood the role of HCV area in protecting the biodiversity of the area around our operations and we fully appreciate the needs and the benefits of protecting them. Consequently, we have commissioned HCV assessments for all of our plantations to identify the important environmental and social values present within the boundary of our plantations. We have also established and implemented a management and monitoring plan to protect and conserve the HCV area identified.
Combating Climate Change
Greenhouse gases (GHG) are a group of gases whose properties allow them to absorb and retain heat from the sun. The main greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere are water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and ozone (O3). The presence of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere traps the heat reflected off the surface of the earth and causes an increase in ambient temperature. This warming effect allowed contemporary life forms to thrive. However, continued and uncontrolled increase in the concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases especially those caused by anthropogenic activities are threatening to cause an irreversible climate change and ultimately a runaway greenhouse effect. Actions are urgently needed to combat it.
Identification and Quantification
In Permata Hijau, we take an active stance in combating climate change. We identify all of our greenhouse gas emission sources including those from land use change and operational activities and then we quantify our greenhouse gases emission through two type of GHG emission calculation:
Our land use change emission is calculated to be zero because we had not cleared any new land for oil palm cultivation since early 2000s.
GHG Emission Reduction Activities
We design our GHG emission reduction activities based on the result of our identification and quantification process. Most prominent sources of emission such as POME and land use change are prioritized. GHG emission reduction activities that we have undertaken include:
Permata Hijau will continue to innovate and seek out other emission reduction opportunities in our continued fight against climate change. We understood that since we have already implemented the obvious and most impactful emission reduction programs (the low hanging fruits such as the use of biomass in our boilers, methane capture etc), the potential for further reduction is becoming more limited. As such, we have set a modest emission reduction target where we aimed to reduce our 2030 GHG emission intensity by 5% compared to our 2020 baseline.
Freshwater is a precious and limited resource. Even though our operations are located in the tropical area with abundant rainfall and freshwater resources, Permata Hijau still consider water efficiency as an important aspect in our sustainability management because we understood that plentiful is not the same as unlimited.
Our water use in 2020 is 9.6 million m3 with water use intensity of 2.2 m3/ton products. To reduce our water use intensity we have implemented various programs such as rainwater collection, reject water reuse, waterless cleaning of accidental oil spill (utilizing fibres), waste water recycling etc. While these programs have contributed to the decrease in our water use intensity over the years, we will not rest but will continue to innovate and seek out ways to further reduce our water use intensity.
We aim to reduce our 2030 water use intensity by 5% compared to our 2020 level.
Proper Waste water Management
Permata Hijau attaches great importance to the proper treatment of the wastewater generated by our operations. While the common practice of the palm oil mills is to treat the palm oil mill effluent (POME) in a series of open lagoons, we went beyond the requirement and built methane capture plants to complement the lagoons. Aside from reducing GHG emission by capturing and destroying the methane generated, the methane capture plant also reduce the odor generated by the wastewater treatment process.
For our downstream operations such as refinery, we have constructed wastewater treatment plants combining chemical and biological treatment to treat our palm oil refinery effluent (PORE) and reduce its pollution load.
All of these treatment systems for POME as well as PORE ensured that our wastewater have met the specified legal limit. This is evidenced in our facilities obtaining PROPER BIRU awards from the government signifying full compliance to all environmental regulations.
We observe a policy of zero peat development and manage our existing plantation on peat in accordance with the RSPO Best Management Practice (BMP). We have constructed water control structures (such as water weir and water gate) to maintain the water level at the recommended 50-70 cm below ground surface and have installed water level gauges and piezometers to measure and ensure that the water level is maintained at the recommended level.
We also installed peat subsidence pole to measure the subsidence rate of the peat.
Lastly, we evaluate the long term viability of our existing peat area and conduct a peat drainability assessment before any replanting activities in our peat area.
We strive to maintain the health and the structure of the soil of our plantations. We return the fronds and other biomass from palm oil processing such as boiler ash and decanter solid to replenish the nutrient content of the soil. In areas with young palm (which is apt to happen in plantation undergoing replanting) we establish ground cover using cover crops such as Mucuna Bracteata to prevent erosion.
Proper Chemical Use and Waste Management
The use of chemicals such as synthetic fertilizers and pesticides is an unavoidable facet of plantation operations. However, it can adversely impact the environment in and around our operations. Groundwater contamination from chemicals leaching through the soil and surface water contamination due to the runoff from the rain are the two main environmental concerns. Additionally, the use of chemicals can also negatively impact the health of our workers who handle their use.
To minimize the adverse impact of the use of chemicals on the environment as well as on the health of our workers, we have implemented the following strategies: