All of Indonesia's
Territory is a Conservation Area
Locally, millions of people in traditional and local communities have long relied on a wide range of non-timber forest products, forest-based swidden agriculture systems, and wildlife as a major source of subsistence and cash income. Often sustainable in the past, many traditional (adat) resource management and production systems have spiraled into unsustainability under pressures of population growth, immigration to forest frontiers, and introduction of new markets, technologies, and local consumer demands. Allocation and management of Indonesia's forest resources has been planned and implemented centralistically, exploitatively, and unsustainable and unequitably, and denying the importance of conserving its ecological function, biodiversity richness and the local communities' rights on their forest resources and its management.
Telapak has since early 1997 developing a project, designed for over two years period, which aims to empower selected national and local NGOs and the communities they work with to play a major role in bringing about reform of HPH practices, minimization of illegal logging, and the integration of large-scale and community-level sustainable forest production systems into efforts to conserve major pristine forest tracts and the biodiversity they contain.
The project has three main elements: (1) Building of local capacity to conduct field investigations of forest practices, analyze the findings, and effectively utilize them to influence policymakers; (2) Support for implementation of the evolving national system for timber certification, with emphasis on building local capacity to participate in, validate, and benefit from the system; (3) Catalyzing better integration of forest production (large- and small-scale, timber and non-timber) into the "integrated conservation and development project" (ICDP) approach now being carried out to conserve many of Indonesia's major protected areas.
In the field, the project will work initially in three of Indonesia's most crucial forest frontier areas--the Leuser Ecosystem of northern Sumatra, the Kayan Mentarang Ecosystem of Kalimantan and the Lorentz Ecosystem of Irian Jaya. In each of these areas, the project will work with local NGOs, these include PLASMA (based in East Kalimantan), the Leuser Conservation Foundation (Yayasan Leuser Lestari - YLL, based in North Sumatra), and the Irian Jaya Environment Foundation (Yayasan Lingkungan Hidup Irian Jaya - YALI).
Nationally, the project will work with the Indonesian Ecolabeling Institute (Lembaga Ekolabel Indonesia - LEI) on the timber certification issue, with the Community Forest Management System Network (Sistem Hutan Kerakyatan -- SHK) in supporting effective and sustainable community-based forest management and production, and with WWF-Indonesia in promoting more effective forest production models within ICDP projects and policies. The World Resources Institute (WRI) will serve as a general partner for the project, as part of its Forest Frontiers Initiative (discussed below), and will particularly assist with project design, data analysis, and outreach.
© 1998 Telapak Indonesia Foundation. All rights
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