Age: 34 years

Date of Birth: 16/08/66

Home: Kapo Village

Province: West New Britain Province

Nationality: Papua New Guinea



1974-1979 Kakasi Community School Grade V1 Certificate
1980-1983 Kimbe Provincial High School Grade 10 Certificate
1984-1986 PNG Forestry College Diploma in Forestry
1988-1990 PNG University of Technology Bachelor of Science Degree in Forestry



Graduate School of Science and Technology, Chiba University, Japan Masters Degree in Environmental Science and Landscape Ecology


1986-1987 Forest Planner/Supervisor Stettin Bay Lumber Company Pty Ltd
1991- 1993 District Forest Officer, Kimbe District Department of West New Britain Province, Forest Branch.
1993 (six months) Acting Industrial Monitoring Officer. Department of West New Britain, Forest Branch.
1993- 1998 Environmental Planner, (Forestry, Islands Region) Department of Environment & Conservation
1998 - 2000 Environmental Compliance & Enforcement officer, Lihir Site Office & New Guinea Islands. Department of Environment & Conservation
2000 - present Scientific officer (renewable resources) Department of Environment & Conservation

Overview of current Research Program

The Theme:Evaluating the ecological influences of the changes in the landscape structure by Oil Palm cultivation on vegetation, soil and inshore fringing coral reefs.(A case study of the Oil Palm Plantations in Papua New Guinea).

Research Overview.

The objective of this study was to investigate the ecological status of the vegetation, soil and inshore fringing coral reefs when there is a change in the landscape structure by Oil Palm Cultivation by evaluating GIS and Remote Sensing data for change detection, and actual field measurements and observation. The parameter to be detected are; % vegetation cover under Oil palm plant, species, height and occurrence. vegetation similarities and dissimilarities, abundance, frequency. presence, absence and composition. Similarly, soil investigation will be executed to ascertain extent of soil erodibility land use intensity and classes including their extent .

Oil palm (Elaes guinensis), a palm tree grown widely in humid tropical regions such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Ghana and Papua New Guinea (where rainfall is heavy and terrain is often steep) has the potential to induce numerous negative environmental impacts. Soil erosion and vegetation depletion are the resultant phenomena brought about by agro-based industries where Oil palm industries are of no exception. In North/West parts of New Britain (Papua New Guinea), significant changes of the natural forest landscape by Oil Palm plantation cultivation has adversely impacted on the quality of soil and vegetation. Large areas of pristine forest landscape were firstly reduced by log harvesting and followed by complete clear felling for Oil Palm Plantation Development which impaired the vegetation, hydrological equilibria and triggered massive top soil loss through erosion. Habitat and bio-diversity loss, run-offs, marine and estuarine pollution are imminent. Soil erosion and vegetation quality under Oil palm plantation has been considered negligible by many in terms of economic pursuits and has not draw intensive studies in a developing country such as Papua New Guinea.

The approach

The approach to conduct this study will initially involve intensive analysis of the GIS and Remote Sensing data "Landsat TM images" available (ERDAS & GIS ArcView Facility, Plant Science Laboratory) to gain a preliminary knowledge of the existing vegetation types, different Land use types and intensity, topography and extent of the study site. The area of interest (AOI) is New Britain Island of Papua New Guinea. Two sets of field surveys will follow on (possibly in August 2001 and August of the succeeding year). Sampling design and strategies to be employed involve establishment of square or rectangle transects 20m X 20m to be established within Oil Palm Plantations areas and at virgin forest as reference sites. Measurements and Observation of the three parameters of interest, that is vegetation and soil and inshore fringing reefs will be undertaken. In respect to vegetation variables, inventory will be conducted for; species composition, frequency, abundance, presence, absence and other conditions. Sampling protocols are to be filled out as raw field data for processing, analysis and evaluation. For fringing coral reefs, the use of high resolution Landsat images will be analyzed and possible areas of impacts will be delineated. Depending on the data, a suitable statistical approach will be utilized such as cluster analysis or other forms of multivariate analysis techniques. In addition, it is envisaged that the use of apparent erosion intensity, land-use history, soil color and texture and in situ measurement of soil pH and conductivity will be used as indicators of the state of soil from different sites including reference points. This will allow a comprehensive understanding of the soil and vegetation status under Oil Palm plantation.

Preparation to date


Ø A research proposal has been completed and submitted, early April 2001.

Ø Reviews of previous similar studies is presently in progress and will be finalized by 10th May, 2001

Ø Remote sensing data viz; TM landsat images purchased re: Prof. Tatsuaki Kobayashi now available for immediate use.

Ø Presently learning operative functions and application of ERDAS software in Landsat image processing.

To be studied by: Stephen Talania Keu Student

Ass.Prof. Dr. Tatsuaki Kobayashi Supervisor

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