Since the 1970’s, numerous drainage canals were constructed by hand or with excavator into the center of the Kampar Peninsula for the purpose of removing logs by commercial timber harvesting companies.
Continuous and uncontrolled drainage degrades the peat forest as it lowers water tables, drying the peat, and making it susceptible to fires which emit vast amounts of smoke and green house gases. These unmanaged canals also enable illegal loggers to illicitly remove trees, causing further forest degradation and biodiversity impacts.
Key to the restoration effort at Restorasi Ekosistem Riau (RER) area is restoring and managing peat moisture level. RER's Forest Protection and water management staff are making steady progress in restoring the hydrology of the Ecosystem Restoration concessions, located on the Kampar Peninsula.
In October 2016, the RER team placed hundreds of georeinfox covered sandbag at Kanal Buaya, Serkap river. These are materials to build dams with one canal requires about 345 sandbags.
To date, RER team has blocked 4 canals from the hundreds identified in the area, with one canal consists of four to five dams.