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Beyond Carbon, More than Forest

The trees will stand and at the same time revenues are received and people’s welfare is improved

By still sticking to REDD+’s initial objective, which is to reduce emission from deforestation and forest degradation, REDD+ initiative in Indonesia is moving beyond carbon.

REDD+ program in Indonesia moving beyond its objective to reduce carbon by strategically improve forest governance. The objective is an equal and fair distribution of forest benefits while preserving their forest. This is the essence of REDD in Indonesia.

It’s estimated that there are more than 49 million people live surrounding forest in Indonesia. Their livelihoods rely on forest products. Their reliance on forest might be entire or partial and direct or indirect. By using World Bank standard of poverty – living on less than $2 a day – most of the categorized as poor.

Forest is a source of living and, for some people, acts as a safety net. They collect firewood, medicinal plants, tree bark, and other non-wood products and hunt to fulfil their own needs or to be sold in the market. For many, forest is a spiritual center that inseparable from their daily lives.

“REDD+ in Indonesia sets a strategy to drive (economic) growth that is sustainable and equitable”

By this regards, REDD+ in Indonesia sets a strategy to drive (economic) growth that is sustainable and equitable. That’s something that requires paradigm change: from ‘cutting down trees for money’ to ‘preserving trees as a sustainable welfare for people’.

Cooperating with other stakeholders, REDD+ initiative in Indonesia moves to save trees both inside and outside the forest area. Economic incentives are also given to the local people who have played an active role in protecting the remaining trees. The domino effect is expected from such incentives to thrive local economy to the point where the local people don’t have to rely on the extraction of forest products.

What REDD+ Indonesia has done is an integrated effort to reduce emission and deforestation while also maintaining biodiversity and provide sustainable source of living for the people surrounding forest.

REDD+ is a global positive incentive mechanism for developing countries to preserve their carbon-rich forests. Even though the development of REDD+ must adapt with the political dynamic, the implementation of REDD+ in Indonesia has played an important role in the national effort to achieve targets in reduce of emission 29% from the business of usual level in 2030. Only by taking into account the livelihood and the prosperity of the people, the sustainable environment can be achieved.

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