In West Kalimantan, IDH is committed to protecting and restoring the remaining forests and peat lands. IDH aims to protect 120.000 hectares of high-conservation value forest, rehabilitate 10.000 hectares and ensure sustainable production on 43.000 hectares. To do so, we address landscape connectivity, greenhouse gas emissions and intensifying sustainable commodity production while managing the entire landscape through a holistic approach. The program works closely together with key private sector companies, government (national, provincial) and civil society organizations.
The landscape stretches across an ecological gradient of coastal mangroves, peat lands, and lowland forests containing at least nine distinct ecosystem types and the largest area of unconverted deep peat in the province. The area is rich in animal and plant species, including many that are endangered or threatened, and contains large blocks of orangutan habitat. Indigenous people living in the landscape base their livelihoods on rice farming and agroforestry.
Upstream forest ecosystems help provide clean water for local communities, and flood control to downstream communities.
Forest areas and cover in Ketapang, Kubu Raya, and Kayong Utara Districts in West Kalimantan.
Agro-commodity production, mainly oil palm and wood fiber contributes to economic development in West Kalimantan. Policy incentives to encourage commodity growth and the growing industry demand for land have contributed to the challenge of competing claims for land use.
A balance needs to be found between large scale commodity production and maintaining natural forest and peat ecosystems for biodiversity conservation, ecosystem services and use by local communities. Oil palm cultivation is the most important economic activity in the landscape, followed by logging for wood fiber. Rubber and illipe nut form the basis for smallholder agroforestry and the rural economy. Much of the Ketapang district has been licensed for mining exploration, and small scale gold mining as well as large scale bauxite mining operations are taking place. Seventy percent of Ketapang district’s land area is under lease for either oil palm (40 percent) or wood fiber (30 percent) plantations.
There are approximately 95 oil palm estates in Ketapang, of which 40 are owned by 15 palm oil groups that are members of the Round Table for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).
This is a voluntary certification scheme that requires avoidance of sensitive areas, set-asides for High Conservation Value (HCV) and fair treatment of local communities affected by operations. RSPO compliance helps companies maintain access to western markets and provides them with a social license to operate. Legal and above legal compliance requirements provide important incentives for palm oil companies to support sustainable land use planning.
West Kalimantan contains important protected areas and national parks which are home to endangered species such as the Proboscis Monkey.
These areas are under pressure from conversion of forest lands on peat soils to estate crops, community encroachment, illegal logging and the proliferation of fires.
Deforestation is a key issue in the province as is the limited connectivity between remaining forest blocks, threatening endangered species. Conversion of peat lands is also crucial as half of the peat land has already been designated for permanent production, and this is likely to increase due to significant expansion of estate crops within the province. This has led to significant levels of greenhouse gasses being emitted from the province.
If left unaddressed, the current challenges will be exacerbated and will ultimately pose severe risks to endangered species, to the livelihoods of those who live in the landscape, to global greenhouse gas emissions, and to the supply of key commodities which undermines long-term security for business and consumer satisfaction.
IDH focus in West-Kalimantan is on the districts (kabupaten) of Kubu Raya, Kayong Utara and Ketapang, which together encompass an area of 4.2 million hectares. 1.6 million ha is still covered by forest vegetation. Approximately 1 million ha of the three districts consists of peat land. The area that is, based on these figures, under agricultural or mining production is approximately 2,277,906 ha.
In addition to the key threats to peat soils and forests mentioned above, a key issue in this landscape is the limited connectivity between remaining forest areas, threatening key species.
Most of the remaining forest is located on land designated to some form of production – from agricultural and to different types of production forest. This signals the need to involve the private sector to be able to protect these areas.
IDH has convened a Green Growth Plan at the Provincial level with accompanying multi-stakeholder coalition driving the implementation. For that implementation, IDH is developing production- protection-inclusion compacts in the areas where forest and peat protection and/or restoration will take place.
IDH links these compacts to investments in sustainable production and demand for sustainable products.
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