TBI in Indonesia works towards the improvement and implementation of landscape level conservation planning and the natural resource governance of forested lands allocated to villages and communities in Indonesia, with a current focus on the Ketapang and Kayong Utara districts in West Kalimantan Province.
The Ketapang and Kayong Utara districts have experienced rapid expansion of oil palm plantations and other land-based investments at the expense of forests and peatlands. Oil palm expansion has led to conversion, degradation and fragmentation of forests, with severe consequences for biodiversity, including the endangered Borneo orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus wurmbii). The governance of natural resources in both districts is still challenging, and existing policies, regulations and multi-stakeholder processes have not functioned effectively. The participation of local communities in land-use decision making processes is limited. Unclear land tenure contributes to poor landscape governance, many communities experience tenure insecurity, and conflicts over tenure are common.
In many parts of Indonesia, including in Kayong Utara and Ketapang districts, the establishment of large-scale oil palm plantations, followed by the uncontrolled expansion of smallholders, continues to occur at the expense of forest and peat areas. Through our work in partnership with various landscape actors, we aim to contribute to a climate smart landscape, while also providing a model of climate-smart landscape development that can be applied in other areas of Indonesia.
What we do:
Establish essential ecosystem areas (KEE) to integrate oil palm plantations in the landscape while effectively protecting and connecting High Conservation Value (HCV) and High Carbon Stock (HCS) areas.
Develop income-earning models that link peatland conservation and restoration with sustainable development.
Develop a model for independent oil palm smallholders to improve natural resource governance, based on sound village-level planning, with special attention to the role of women and youth.
Support the development of alternative livelihoods in forest-margin communities in the form of sustainable NTFP extraction and forest-ecosystem-service-based entrepreneurship.
Together with village and district governments in Ketapang and Kayong Utara districts upscale participatory and (gender-) inclusive natural resource and land-use planning.
Facilitate the development of community-forest schemes and improve the capacities of local stakeholders to develop and implement community forest management plans.
Build capacity among smallholders and communities to develop their climate-smart ideas into business propositions, and to encourage finance providers (local banks, credit unions but also external investors) to invest in such activities.
Contribute to a large scale shared vision of conservation and development priorities in Gunung Tarak Landscape based on the High Conservation Value (HCV) approach.
Support Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and communities to coordinate their strategies, and influence government and oil palm companies to establish, conserve and manage high value areas.
Strengthen the knowledge and capacities of CSOs, CBOs and government actors on the HCV concept through training, facilitation and technical assistance.
Provide technical training and facilitation in alternative livelihoods, spatial planning and other skills to community members.
Support local CSOs and community-based organisations to increase their lobbying and advocacy skills.
Tropenbos International works in Indonesia through its local network partner Tropenbos Indonesia. Visit their website for more information: www.tropenbos-indonesia.org
Tropenbos International has been operating in Indonesia since 1987 with a field site in East Kalimantan and from 2007 it has expanded its operation nationwide. In 2017, Tropenbos Indonesia became a legal national entity of Indonesia and a member of the Tropenbos International network.
In the past years the main focus of TBI's work in Indonesia has been the promotion of the High Conservation Value (HCV) approach. TBI has provided policy-relevant and evidence-based information and build the capacities of policy makers and corporate actors on the application of HCV approach for the sustainable management of plantation forests and oil palm plantations in Indonesia. TBI facilitated the establishment of the HCV Network Indonesia and supported HCV Resource Network in the development of HCV guidance at landscape and jurisdictional scale.
TBI has contributed to the preparation of a large-scale government programme for Social Forestry and provides assistance to Village Governments to apply for the Social Forestry permits. At community level, TBI has worked on forestry management by developing alternative livelihoods to reduce communities' dependency on forests.
With 15–20% of Indonesian oil palms located, without a legal basis and permits, within the forest zone (‘Kawasan hutan’), international concerns regarding deforestation affect the totality of Indonesian palm oil export. ‘Forest zone oil palm’ (FZ-OP) is a substantive issue that requires analysis and policy change. While spatial details of FZ-OP remain contested, we review literature on (1) the legal basis of the forest zone and its conversion, (2) social stratification in oil palm production (large-scale, plasma and independent growers), and (3) environmental consequences of forest conversion to FZ-OP, before discussing policy options in a range of social and ecological contexts. Policy options range from full regularization (as FZ-OP stands could meet international forest definitions), to conditional acceptance of diversified smallholder plantings in ‘agroforestry concessions’, to gradually phasing out FZ-OP and eviction/destruction. A nuanced and differentiated approach to FZ-OP is needed, as certification of legality along supply chains is vulnerable to illegal levies and corruption. Corporate actors trading internationally can avoid use of uncertified raw materials, effectively shifting blame and depressing farmgate prices for domestic-market palm oil, but this will not return forest conditions or stop further forest conversion. We discuss an agenda for follow-up policy research.
As part of a multi-country review of community forest rights, Tropenbos Indonesia conducted a review of Indonesia’s social forestry programme, aiming to assess its environmental and livelihood outcomes, and identify ways to improve these outcomes and the role that Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) can play in this. In this policy brief we summarize some of the main outcomes of the review, and the consequent recommendations for CSOs.
This brief focuses on the Indonesian oil palm sector and highlights key characteristics that must be considered when developing the EU legislative framework. This brief focuses on environmental impacts of proposed measures and other social issues. It describes the oil palm sector, initiatives that are shaping sustainability, and lessons learned, based on literature and experiences from Tropenbos Indonesia’s ongoing work in West Kalimantan, leading to key considerations that EU policymakers should take on board when developing their ambitious plans for more sustainable agrocommodity supply chains.
In 2018 to support collaborative landscape initiatives, Tropenbos International and EcoAgriculture Partners partnered to develop the Landscape Assessment of Financial Flows (LAFF) methodology. This practical two–phase approach helps stakeholders identify local sources of finance for new investment ideas, [to] find the current financial flows that are most in need of transformation, and better understand the elements of a landscape’s financial context that require support. This report summarizes the results of a pilot application of both phases of LAFF in the Gunung Tarak Landscape in Indonesia from September 2018 until July 2019 and discusses the possible implications for the design of an integrated landscape finance strategy in that landscape.