The environment in Indonesia was seriously degraded in 2005, Environment Minister Rachmat Witoelar said in Jakarta on Tuesday.
The degradation of the country's environment was very bad, especially through deforestation, Witoelar said after launching his office's 2005 report on the Status of the Indonesian Environment.
As a consequence of the environmental degradation, Indonesia was hit by a number of natural disasters such as floods, landslides and disease outbreaks, including bird flu, tuberculosis, polio, diarrhea, acute respiratory problems, malaria, dengue fever, and anthrax.
The immunity of human bodies had worsened as the quality of environmental health had also degraded, Antara news agency quoted the minister as saying.
The Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare in his speech read out by Witoelar said Indonesia's inability in early detection of disasters had increased the possibilities of damage and human casualties.
Since 2003, a total of 229 disasters had hit Indonesia. During the 1991-2000 period, disasters implicated material losses worth 17.6 billion U.S. dollars in Indonesia.
Indonesia has the third largest forest area in the world. However, around 2.8 million hectares of Indonesia's forest area disappear every year mainly due to illegal logging and forest fire.