This report provides an analysis of causes of vegetation fires in the Menggala
area, Lampung Province, Sumatra, Indonesia. The 150,000 ha study area was divided into ecologically different units, i.e. the peneplains and the coastal swamps. The former area is mostly used by large forest plantations and small-scale farming, while land-use in the latter, much wetter area is mostly restricted to swamp rice farming, both by the indigenous inhabitants of the area, spontaneous migrants, and transmigrants as well as plantations. In the peneplains, the four main causes of fire are: land tenure conflicts between local communities and large plantations, the large-scale clearing required for plantation development, the lack of a transparent legal system to address land claims, land ownership, and communal rights, and a lack of fire management facilities in plantations. In the coastal swamps area, fire is used as a tool in traditional swamp rice cultivation, and as more people become involved with this type of land-clearing the pressure on regenerating swamps increases. Burning on plantation land in the swamp area was also found, but underlying causes could not yet be established. Based on the cause analysis, possible implications for policy changes are discussed.
Publisher: Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and World Agroforestry Center, Bogor, Indonesia
Publication Year: 2000