Promoting Tanjabtim to be targeted peatland district model

A Peatland-friendly District Model or Kabupaten Ramah Gambut (KRG)

Indonesian Conservation Community (KKI) – Warsi incessantly encourages the sustainable peatland management. The Tanjung Jabung Timur District has 65% or 3,120 km2 Peatland areas where WARSI works and focuses on to develop a peatland model through a program known as Kabupaten Ramah Gambut (KRG).

Warsi has been actively working in this area by restoring the peatland thru planting some local commodities (peatland-based commodities) on the peatland area, improving local economic rate by developing peatland-based agricultures, such as liberica coffee, peppers, betel nuts, pineapple and other crops that do not acquire water level decreasing of peatland area.

Another activity conducted was securing the peatland water level in wet circumstances. Thus, WARSI encouraged the community of Sungai Beras Village to build a canal bulkhead in Sungai Bulu Protected Forest within the Sungai Beras Village Forest area. Moreover, WARSI attempted to raise the awareness of community on peatland area by formulating particular groups who are indeed aware of their local area characteristic. All the activities run by WARSI have been in line with an attempt to restore the peatland area.

After the massive land and forest fires in last 2015 which have been devastating the peatland area, most of the parties whose activities in peatland area have committed high attempt to preventing the same issue. The local government of Tanjung Jabung Timur District has made a planning management of peatland, such as counting the sustainable peatland management into RPJMD design by revitalizing the local livelihood supported by Peatland Restoration Agency or Badan Restorasi Gambut (BRG), particularly in Jati Mulyo village with 230 ha to be cultivated area of liberican coffee.

However, the obstacle found in this activity is the map condition. In the hydrological map, the site of liberican coffee in Jati Mulyo Village is specified as protected peatland area with more than three meters deep. Yet, the fact is, it has only less than three meters deep, is non-forest state area (APL), and is suitable for coffee commodities. To solve this problem, the Bappeda and Public Housing and People’s Settlement [PUPR] offices have conducted a ground-check and proposed [the ground-check] to the BRG and KLHK so the relevant parties can revise the Peatland Hydrological Area (KHG) map.

A commitment towards the sustainable peatland and problem solving of the above issues aiming at supporting the community has been a discussed agenda during the Focus Group Discussion (FGD); finding out the contribution of Tanjung Jabung Timur District towards the sustainable peatland management implementation held by KKI WARSI in Bappeda of Tanjabtim (14/5).

The vice-regent of Tanjung Jabung Timur District – Robby Nahliyansyah – officially inaugurated the event and stated that the government of Tanjung Jabung Timur welcomes the initiative of KKI WARSI and other relevant parties in peatland management. According to Robby, this sustainable peatland management has been in line with the vision of the government of Tanjabtim – improving the local welfare or best-known as Merakyat. To reach the objective of this merakyat while noticing local wisdom, the government of the district will focus on the peatland restoration by planting the commodities of peatland characteristics such as liberican coffee. The communities have planted the liberican coffee on the buffer zone of Londrang protected forest area during the drought season in last 2015, yet it got fired massively. The government of district has also committed not to permitting any plantation companies in peatland area as oil palms need canals which potentially lead to water decrease and vulnerable peatland area towards the fire.

To support the sustainable peatland management and built a relationship that supports each other in terms of peatland restoration, there will be a bank data and database made by Bappeda Tanjabtim covering peatland restoration data from multi parties such as local governments (at district and province level), NGO, companies and societies. In addition, the indicators of Kabupaten Ramah Gambut will be made based on the available data. It is expected that the peatland area in Tanjung Jabung Timur will be sustainable managed, contributing to its communities as well as the environment.

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