In West Kalimantan, IDH is committed to protecting and restoring the remaining forests and peatlands. We aim 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 district level) and civil society organizations.

A major production area for palm oil, timber, pulp and paper among others, West Kalimantan is vital for the Indonesian economy, sourcing companies, and local communities dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods. In the past five years, agriculture generating IDR 120.49 trillion to the economy.

At the same time, the forests and peatlands of West Kalimantan are significant carbon stocks in Indonesia. The estimated carbon stock remaining in West Kalimantan’s forests is 1,600 Giga Tons CO2. Moreover, its forests are home to endemic and endangered species such as the Bornean orangutan and the Proboscis monkey.

Burning down carbon-rich, biologically diverse forests and peatlands for agriculture is the biggest sustainability challenge in the region, contributing to climate change through carbon emissions.

We address this by:

  1. Convening palm oil, forestry, other plantation companies, government and communities around critical forest and peat ecosystems to put in place participatory land-use & management plans. These will have positive impact on community livelihoods, business performance, and forest and peatland protection and rehabilitation.
  2. Creating financial benefits and incentives for sustainable production, forest protection and activities that include smallholders in supply chains (PPI). Sustainable production entails increased yields and market access, while protection involves investments in production conditional to protection results among others.
  3. Working with government at national, provincial and local levels to develop and implement green growth strategies and an enabling legal framework & enforcement
Landscape Overview

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. 


Program Activities

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.




Fitrian Ardiansyah

Country Director IDH Indonesia

phone+62 (0) 21 2952 9853

e-mailemail me

Daan Wensing

Program Director, ISLA

phone+31 (0) 6 1588 3096

e-mailemail me

Manizha Korodiva

Communication Officer, ISLA

phone+31 (0) 30 230 5660

e-mailemail me

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