Sanur Raya No. 27
Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai,
Sanur, Bali, Indonesia
Tel: ++62 361 286 283
Fax: ++62 361 286 284
24h: Voice/SMS ++62 812 3819724
BALI UPDATE #588 - 17
Bali's for the Birds
30 Rare Bali Starlings Released Back into the Wild.
Indonesia's Forestry Minister, MS Kaban, released 30 rare and endangered Bali Starlings (Jalak Putih or Leocopsar Rothschild) at the West Bali National Park on December 9, 2007 during his attendance at the United Nation's Framework Conference on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The Minister issued a warning on the precious bird's future, saying, "if we do not supervise and guard these birds they will become extinct."
The bird release was done in two areas with 15 birds released at Brumbun and 15 more near Munsun. The brief ceremony was witnessed by local park officials and 20 international delegates attending the UNFCCC.
All the birds released back into the wild were fitted with miniature radio beacons so their future movement and welfare can be monitored by scientists.
Taking Food Hygiene to New Heights
Bali's Aerowisata Catering Wins Prestigious In-Flight Catering Award from Cathay Pacific Airways.
Aerowisata Catering Services - Denpasar - Bali's in-flight food service subsidiary of Garuda Indonesia, was recently awarded the 2006 Cathay Pacific Hygiene Award - naming the Bali food service center the "most hygienic" among the world-wide network of catering support employed by the Hong Kong air carrier. The second consecutive year in which Aerowisata Catering Services was so honored, the award recognizes the highest standards of hygiene maintained by the in-flight catering operation at Bali's Ngurah Rai Airport, which prepares more than 7,000 in-flight meals every day.
The award was presented to the General Manager of Aerowisata Catering Services - Denpasar, Riza Suryo, by Charles Grossrieder, Catering Service Manager of Cathay Pacific Airways.
Employing more than 650 employees at its state-of-the-art Bali facility, the Bali in-flight catering operation has earned ISO 9001: 2000 certification for hazard analysis and critical control point practices.
The latest award from Cathay Pacific complements an earlier "silver award" fromThai Airways for catering service; a runner-up from Singapore Airlines for best catering service; and a Food Safe Plus Award form the Australian Institute of Environmental Health.
Balinese Moments - An Exhibition by Ventje
Paintings from Balinese Life at Casa Iseabo December 15, 2007 - January 31, 2008.
Bali's Casa Iseabo - Gallery of Contemporary Art will host an exhibition of paintings depicting Balinese life by Ventje S.
With inspiration drawn from the daily life and spiritual practice of the Balinese, Ventje's paintings reflect his deep love of the Island and its people. Colorful, realistic and rich in detail - Ventje's works reveal a spiritual understanding of the Balinese drawn from months dedicated to sitting and careful observation in a Denpasar market or roaming the rice fields of Bali.
Born in Jakarta of Manadonese parentage, Ventje has spent the past 42 years living and painting in Bali.
Despite enjoying a world wide audience for his artwork, the current exhibition will be Ventje's first solo exhibition in Bali and only his second internationally, the first of which held in the Maison de France, Phnom Penh, Cambodia in 1971. Working traditionally with oil paints on canvas for his larger composition, Ventje employs a special technique of layering oils, creating an exciting visual effect in his smaller works. The exhibition also includes a number of large black pen sketches on paper that depict daily life in Bali.
Casa Iseabo is located in Seminyak in Bali and was established to provide an international platform for Balinese and Indonesian artists. The gallery works with artists who share a fierce commitment to their artistic vision, whatever the medium; whether hand-sculptured stone or wood, glass, painting, bronze and iron, marble, weaving, batik design, paintings or drawings.
The exhibition, "Balinese Moments" runs untils January 31, 2008.
For more information contact Susana Archibald at telephone ++62-(0) 81805503193.
Minister Wacik Concedes Optimistic Tourism Targets for 2007 Will Not Be Met.
According to the National News Agency ANTARA, Indonesia's Minister of Culture and Tourism has finally acknowledged that the revised target of 6 million foreign visitors to Indonesia in 2007 will not be reached.
Speaking at the launch of the Visit Indonesia Year 2008 logo as that logo was officially affixed to the fuselage of a Garuda Indonesia aircraft, Wacik said, "the target for foreign tourists in 2007 is 6 million, but I think we will only achieve 5.4 million."
Meanwhile, the Director General of Marketing for the Ministry, Thamrin B. Bachri, attempted to put the best face on the lower figure, saying 5.4 million still represented the best year ever for Indonesian tourism, topping the 5.3 million achieved in 2004. Thamrin was also quick to point out that the 5.4 million was in keeping the pessimistic to moderate projection set by the Ministry and represented a 14.24% improvement over the 4.79 million visitors achieved in 2006.
Data from the Department of Culture and Tourism recorded 3,710,848 visitors to all of Indonesia for the first 10 months of 2007.
Nobel Prize Winner Al Gore Mesmerizes Participants at Bali Climate Conference with Some Inconvenient Truths.
Arriving in Bali immediately after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore arrived at the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change to deliver some "inconvenient truths" to the thousands of delegates. Speaking on Thursday evening as the Conference moved towards it Saturday conclusion, Gore electrified many, citing powerful historical parallels to describe the perils of continued inaction in the face of a worsening global climate crisis. Comparing environmental inaction to a moral failing not dissimiliar to the world's failure to respond to the Nazi persecution of European Jews in the 1930s, Gore also pointed to the Marshall Plan in post-WWII Europe as a model of how concerted world action could affect a dynamic change in the political landscape. The Nobel prize winner explained how, in the time span of only 50 years, the economic rebuilding of Europe has ended Europes "exportation of war," rendering as ridiculous the very idea of Germany invading France.
Admonishing U.S. official resistance to commit to firm CO2 reduction targets, Gore told the delegates that the call for decisive action to end climate change was earning groundswell support among the American public and around the world. The forces of "people power" committed to fighting global warning must, according to Gore, allow mankind to pursue a climate change prevention agenda, with or without the immediate support of the U.S.A., Canada and Japan.
Referring to four unanimous assessments by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) calling for urgent world action to stop climate change, Gore asked: "The Earth's fever is rising and it won't heal itself. What do you do when your child has fever and the doctor says he needs treatment? Perhaps you go for a second opinion, then a third and a fourth. When the fourth opinion says the problem is very serious, do we still withhold treatment?"
A Tale of Two Planets
Quoting from Charles Dicken's, Gore told his audience "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." But, unlike the Tale of Two Cities, Gore explained, the world now faces the Tale of Two Planets - Earth and Venus. Insisting that the two planets were identical, with the critical difference that on earth millions of years of plant growth had removed CO2 from the atmosphere and stored it underground in the form of fossil fuels. The removal of CO2 from the once toxic atmosphere of earth had made the planet suitable for the life. However, the rapid combustion of those stored carbons by a fuel-hungry world inhabited by 6.5 billion people is unraveling the earth's delicate atmospheric balance, and leaving us all with an increasingly toxic biosphere.
Onward Climat Warriors, Onward as to War
Gore urged the delegates to lead the way to climate change prevention with or without the immediate support of the U.S.A.: "My country is not the only one that can move forward. You can do one of two things. You can feel anger and frustration and direct it at the US. Or you can move forward and keep a large blank space in your mandate, saying our mandate is incomplete but we're moving forward in the hope that it will be filled in by the time we have a treaty in Copenhagen."
Suggesting the increasingly unpopular Bush administration did not reflect the general sentiments expressed by the U.S. people, their Congress, State governments and municipalities, Gore offered assurances that the U.S.A. would soon "move forward" when the next administration is elected.
The Time for Action is Now
Closing his comments by urging even more aggressive and more urgent targets for the reduction of greenhouse gasses, Gore echoed the warning of scientists sating that the window of opportunity for action may be as little as 10 years.
Gore continued: "Global warming anywhere is a threat to the world everywhere. We must leave Bali with a strong mandate. It's not a political issue, It's not a diplomatic issue. It's a moral issue."
Telling his audience that we live at a unique juncture of human history with the opportunity to "change the shape of the world."
"We have all we need except political will," said Gore. "And that's a renewable resource".
Switch Off, Unplug, Enjoy - Energy Efficient Bali!
Bali Hotels Aiming to Reduce Energy Consumption by 40% Within One Year.
Greenpeace in cooperation with the Bali Hotel Association (BHA) and the Owner of Bali's Nusa Dua Complex - the Bali Tourism Development Corporation (BTDC) used the occasion of the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to announce the launch of a new energy reduction program for Bali's hotel industry.
Switch Off, Unplug, Enjoy
The energy conservation program, dubbed Switch off, Unplug, Enjoy - Energy Efficient Bali, was launched on board Greenpeace's fabled Rainbow Warrior docked at Bali's Benoa Harbor.
The program, based on a survey conducted by Greenpeace among 15 hotels in Nusa Dua in November 2007, outlines the steps than can be taken by hotels to reduce energy consumption and preserve the world's natural environment.
The program which has been strongly endorsed by Indonesia's Minister for the Environment, Rachmat Witoelar, is aimed at all hotels, guest houses, restaurants, cafes and entertainment venues in Bali. Socialization of the program will be done through a series of educational seminars conducted among tourism industry members.
The Bali energy conservation program has set for itself an ambitious energy reduction target of 40% within one year of its commencement.
Data published by the Jakarta Post states that 70% of peak hour electricity consumption in the Badung regency of Bali is sourced to hotels. Under the new program a number of energy reduction steps will be introduced, including the installation of solar panels for hotel hot water production.
One Bali hotelier estimated that a medium-sized property could cut electricity costs by as much as US$30,000 in a single year through the use of solar panels for hot water generation.
Registration Opens for 2nd Bali International Triathlon
Building on Success - Bali Prepares to Welcome its Second International Triathlon Event on June 29, 2008.
Bali International Triathlon, LLC has opened registration for the 2nd Annual Bali International Triathlon to be held on the island of Bali on June 29, 2008 at Jimbaran Bay, Bali.
The Olympic distance course, consisting of a 1.5 kilometer swim in the warm waters of Jimbaran Bay, a 40 kilometer bike course through the Nusa Dua area, and a 10 kilometer run through Jimbaran Village ending with a beach finish, will provide participating athletes with both a challenging and scenic race. As with last year's event, athletes can compete in both individual age group categories or through three-person relay teams. A 5 kilometer "Fun Run" will also take place through Jimbaran Village.
Four Seasons Resort at Jimbaran Bay, one of the leading race sponsors, is offering a prize package consisting of a seven day, six night stay in one of their world famous luxury villas for both the overall first male and first female finishers. Four Seasons Resort will also provide a pre-race athlete reception and dinner as well as post-race food for athletes. Awards will also be given to the first three triathlon finishers in each age group category, and the top male and female finishers of the 5K Fun Run. All triathletes will be provided with high quality race T-shirts, entrance to the pre-race party, and unique finisher's award handcrafted by local Balinese artists.
"Our goal is to repeat the huge success of last year's inaugural triathlon. In the process, we hope to promote tourism on the island and provide a quality race that will attract both professional and top age group athletes," says Robb Strom, one of the principals involved in the organization of the race. Race organizers also include Brennan Lindner of Generic Events in Los Angeles, and Bali Discovery Tours in Bali.
Participating athletes are expected to come from all over the world to take advantage of this unique destination race. While in Bali, they can take advantage of the wide range of activities available, including scuba diving, elephant riding, white water river rafting, parasailing, and jet skiing. Bali is famous for its spa properties, and athletes will once again be treated to post-race massage by local Balinese therapists.
Special hotel and tour packages for athletes and their families can be arranged by contacting Bali Discovery Tours.
Event questions and media inquiries can be directed to Brennan Lindner at Generic Events in Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. at ++310-570-9501.
Monte Makes a Beachhead at Nusa Dua
Monte Monfore Swims Ashore at Nusa Dua During UN Climate Change Conference.
Braving ocean waves and patrol boats securing the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Bali's resident marathon swimmer, Monte Monfore, swam from Serangan Island near Bali's Sanur Beach to Nusa Dua on the morning of December 10, 2007.
An official parallel event of the UNFCCC, Monte dubbed his event a "Reverse Climate Change Swim." Addressing the media before entering the water at Serangan island, the 47-year-old endurance athlete said, "this swim is to support efforts to reduce global warming, and highlight the serious threat it poses to the world's endangered coral reefs."
The UNFCCC swim is the latest installment on a series of swims undertaken by the American resident of Bali to promote the United Nations Millennium Campaign and is intended to underline Millennium Goal of ensuring environmental sustainability.
Wearing slogans on his swimmers cap and suit proclaiming "Live Green and Save the Reefs," Monte dedicated his latest feat to "Mother Earth" and reminded the press and his group of enthusiastic supporters that "it's our responsibility to protect and safeguard this fragile planet for future generations."
After a morning downpour, Bali's skies brightened just before the swimmer entered the water at the southeast corner of Serangan Island at 9:19 a.m.. Because of strong outer-reef currents, the athlete's support team advised him to swim inside the reef where he faced substantially less current. The change in route lessened the originally planned seven-kilometer swim to six kilometers. Despite swimming against a slight current most of the way, Monte said he was very pleased with the windless conditions, which greatly improved his stoke efficiency.
Before the start of the swim, Monte drank five large glasses of a high-calorie liquid consisting of eleven eggs, protein powder, fruit, yogurt, and peanut butter. To contend with warm ocean water and prevent dehydration, the marathon swimmer paused in the water to take 10-second breaks to consume sports drinks approximately once every 15 minutes. And, as with past swims, he strictly obeyed the rules of ocean swimming: no wetsuit, no fins, and no touching the support boat.
Monte's swim was supported by half a dozen vessels, three filled with armed Navy and Marine Police escorts providing security for the UNFCCC and Monte as he swam the busy Benoa Harbor channel. The armada of warships securing the Nusa Dua and the UN Conference provided an additional and unique navigational challenge to the swimmer.
After two hours and three minutes Monte stepped onto white sands of Nusa Dua beach at 11:22 a.m. directly in front of the Convention venue for the UNFCCC at the Westin Resort. There he was greeted by a cheering crowd of UN officials, observers, and more than 20 members of the media.
A Man Who Cares About the World's Oceans
Echoing the message being delivered just meters away at the important climate change conference, Monte told the press that he had "terrible news." Explaining, he said: "The ocean is dying. 15 years ago I used to see dozens of reef sharks and turtles every week. Now I rarely see them." He also spoke about the "beautiful coral reefs" dying because of global warming, which, he said, was "up to all of us" to stop. He concluded by encouraging people to change their lifestyles and learn to reduce their "carbon footprints"; inviting "everyone to join the growing chorus of citizens worldwide becoming part of the Green Generation."
Following his remarks, Monte introduced renowned US-based Coral Ecologist Dr. Thomas J. Goreau who spoke briefly about the effects of garbage, pollution, and global warming on the world's ocean and sensitive coral reef ecosystems. Monte then announced that his swim was "carbon neutral" and introduced Yensen Alaiman of American Express who revealed that his Company would be planting hundreds of trees on nearby Nusa Penida island to mark the "Reverse Climate Change Swim."
Don't Forget the Next Generation
Reflecting Monte Monfore's strong commitment to child welfare in Indonesia, the swim also featured a US$2,500 donation to the Sanur-based Baitul Muslimin Orphanage, symbolically received by 10 children from the orphanage attending the ceremony. Much to the delight of spectators and the children, two rescued 50-centimer green turtles were released back into the ocean to underline the continuing efforts to stamp out the illegal turtle trade in Bali.
Chelsea Butler - Australian Star of Popular Australian TV Game Show 'Temptation' Escapes a Melbourne Winter to Holiday in Bali
Chelsea Butler, who together with her boyfriend Scott McGregor, serve as model on the top-rated Australian game show Temptation is adding her own brand of temptation to Bali's beaches during the downtime between shooting the Channel 9 show.
Appearing for the past 2.5 years on the show which is the successor to Sales of the Century, Chelsea told Ralph men's magazine, "dying to get there (Bali), lay on the beach, drink cocktails and get brown."
It's unclear if her beau and co-star Scott is also traveling to the Island to ensure adequate sun screen get's applied to all the right places.
A Clean Bill of Wealth
Steps Underway to Curve Money Laundering Activities among Bali Money Changes.
Tempo Interaktif reports that steps are underway to tighten controls on money changers in Bali to improve service and reduce the possibility of money laundering.
Among the steps underway are the issuance of an official logo for display by licensed money changers and a set of know you client procedures requiring those seeking exchange services to prove their true identity.
The Vice Chairman of the Center for the Reporting and Analysis of Financial Transactions (PPATK), Susno Suaji, said, "we hope to get a report on every suspicious financial transaction that takes place."
Suaji said that beginning in 2008 the PPATK will take stern steps against money changers who fail to report their financial transactions including imposing punishments of up to 5 years in prison for transactions traced to money laundering activities.
The Chairman of the Bali Money Changers Association, Made Suparta Karang, said he is prepared to support any steps to control money-laundering. There are currently 494 registered money changers in Bali with still many more illegal money changers operating across the Island.
We Won't Abide With Bribes
Police Move Against Bali Cop Caught Receiving a Bribe on Tape. Police Urge Public to Report Dishonest Officers.
As reported on Balidiscovery.com, [See: Caught in the Act] a Balinese policeman recently was the object of unwanted international attention when he was caught receiving a bribe from two Canadian tourist in Bali who surreptitiously recorded the encounter on video.
The video received international exposure on YoutTube.com and a severe lambasting in the local Bali press complaining that the tape related a situation all-too-familiar to the Island's motorists.
Bali's Chief of Police Inspector General Paulus Purwoko's reputation for giving no quarter to dishonest cops was, however, reinforced when the "starring" officer in the video was tracked down to an Ungusan substation in South Bali.
The Spokesman for the Bali Police, Commissioner AS Reniban, confirmed that Adjutant Inspector 1st Grade I Ketut W was recalled to the Denpasar headquarters on December 11th for interrogation by the Internal Affiars division of the Bali Police. Reniban told Radar Bali that the Police do not in any way condone such behavior and the officer's actions were unrepresentative of the police force as a whole.
A Cuppa for the Copper
Radar Bali reported that during the interrogation Officer Ketut claimed his intentions were "honorable," planning to surrender Rp. 30,000 (US$3.20) of the Rp. 50,000 (US$5.40) suspicious payment to the Denpasar traffic court and use the balance "to buy tea."
Reniban told the press that he hopes the quick action taken by the police against Officer Ketut will encourage the public to remain vigilantly critical of policemen failing in their responsibilities to the public. The police spokesman assured the public that all reports of misbehavior by officers will receive serious and urgent attention by the police.
What final criminal punishment awaits the allegedly errant police office, however, remains unclear. Indonesian criminal law requires actual testimony from witnesses in order for a prosecution to proceed. And, while the video has helped trace the policeman in question the identity of the Canadian tourists, who are now needed to make a formal complaint, remains very much a mystery.
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