Nani Afrida, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Sat, 10/01/2011 8:00 AM
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said Friday that Indonesia was still
facing many hurdles in carrying out its climate change agenda, including what
he said was “poor coordination” among government officials, businessmen and
“The [climate change] program is not only a national agenda, but an
international one as well. We should be able to address the problem with a
better solution. We don’t want to lose this because [to do so would mean] we
cannot achieve the higher agenda,” the President said during a meeting with
representatives from the National Council of Climate Change (DNPI) and several
ministers at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta.
He said there was a serious problem in coordination and synergy between
officials in central government and their local counterparts, and between
businessmen and civil society groups, in furthering the nation’s climate
agenda, which is to reduce emissions by a minimum of 26 percent by the year
“If we find different points of view among policy makers, central government,
local government and civil society organizations, let us return to our vision
and basic policies relating to climate change,”
According to the President, Indonesia is trying to achieve prosperity and
eradicate poverty but without destroying the environment. “I hope the council
will be vigilant on this, to ensure all the policies are appropriate in
boosting the economy and creating jobs, but it should be done without ignoring
our environment,” he said.
DNPI chairman Rahmad Witoelar refused to add further comments to the
“I see it in general terms. But it is important to maintain coordination
between central and local government, as well as ministers.”
Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan acknowledged that coordination is one of the
biggest challenges the country faces in meeting its emission targets.
“It requires good coordination between regions, districts and provinces, so
that everyone has a similar understanding that emission reduction is our duty,”
On Friday, the President held a coordinating meeting with the DNPI and his
ministers to discuss the national program to reduce gas emissions and the REDD+
(reducing emissions from deforestation, and forest degradation plus carbon
stock enhancement) strategy.
Indonesia is trying to tap the financial benefits from the REDD+ scheme, which
offers financial incentives for developing countries to reduce
deforestation-related emissions and invest in low-carbon and long-term forest
Last week, a task force set up by the President on REDD+ signed a memorandum of
understanding (MoU) with the Central Kalimantan administration to begin a pilot
project on the implementation of emission reductions in the province.
The pilot project will be the first in a series of forest protection programs
initiated after Indonesia sealed a US$1 billion deal with the Norwegian government
in May 2010 in return for a two-year moratorium on deforestation.
The country is the third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases globally with
almost 80 percent of the country’s current emissions stemming from
deforestation and forest degradation.
The Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) recorded that Indonesia
is losing about 1.1 million hectares of forest each year, most of which is due
to unsustainable logging for the conversion of forests into oil palm
plantations, and the pulp and paper industry.
It is also partly due to large-scale illegal logging, which is estimated to
cost Indonesia about US$4 billion annually.