International Day for Biodiversity: ASOEN Chair Indonesia Pays Attention to Protect the Giam Siak Kecil-Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve Contributes to Global Biodiversity Framework

On the momentum of International Day for Biodiversity (IDB), ASEAN Senior Officials on Environment (ASOEN) Chair Indonesia, Mr. Ary Sudijanto invites all parties, both individuals, the private sector, communities, as well as institutions and organizations, to unite in protecting, preserving, and restoring biodiversity. The message was conveyed by the Director General of the Agency for Standardization of Environment and Forestry Instruments (ASEFI), as Chair of ASOEN Indonesia at the momentum of International Day for Biodiversity through a video message on the ASEAN Center for Biodiversity (ACB) channel.  

The United Nations designated May 22nd as International Day for Biodiversity to commemorate the adoption of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 1992. The CBD is an international agreement that aims to conserve biodiversity, promote sustainable use of its components, and ensure the fair and equitable sharing of benefits from using genetic resources.

Each year, IDB has a specific theme to focus global attention on a particular aspect of biodiversity. These themes highlight critical issues and encourage actions to safeguard biodiversity. Governments, organizations, communities, and individuals around the world organize various events, campaigns, and initiatives to celebrate the day and raise awareness about biodiversity conservation.

In the 2.39-minute video message, Mr. Sudijanto gave special attention to the Action to Protect Biodiversity in the Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve. Ary said that the Ministry of Environment and Forestry had opened a New Action to Protect the Giam Siak Kecil-Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve in Sumatra.

This is in line with this year’s theme of IDB, From Agreement to Action: Build Back Biodiversity which also calls for translating a new set of global biodiversity targets – the Kunming–Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework – into real action for nature. This Global Biodiversity Framework was agreed upon at the 15th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, or known as COP-15 CBD in Montreal, Canada, last December 2022.

“We believe it will make a strong contribution to the recently agreed Kunming–Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework by both helping to conserve the extraordinary biodiversity in the reserve and enabling local communities to improve their livelihoods,” hoped Mr. Sudijanto optimistically.

The protection action in the Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve is a project carried out by the ASEFI with the support of the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) and was launched on May 2nd, 2023. The project titled ITTO PD 712/13 Rev.3 (F): “Enhancing the implementation of landscape management of Giam Siak Kecil-Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve (GSK-BR), in Riau Province of Sumatra Island, Indonesia” is designed to help achieve management objectives and the basic functions of the Giam Siak Kecil- Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve. This project is funded by the Government of the Republic of Korea, through the Korean Forest Service (KFS).

Photo : Sunawiruddin Hadi

The Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve is the last buffer gate for biodiversity and peat swamp forests in Riau Province, Indonesia. Known as part of the Sumatran peat swamp ecoregion, Giam Siak Kecil-Bukit Batu has a unique habitat and plays an important role in helping to maintain populations of rare, endangered, and endemic species.

The project will work with local communities to improve livelihoods in a manner consistent with maintaining the integrity of the biosphere reserve. Stakeholders have expressed hope that the project will help improve farmers’ skills and capacity for sustainable livelihoods. This project is also expected to develop biosphere reserve management standards.

“We are proud to be working with the (Indonesian) government and stakeholders in Sumatra to implement this important project,” said ITTO Executive Director, Ms. Sheam Satkuru as quoted from the ITTO website (22/5).

Ms. Shatkuru also believes the project in the Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu Biosphere Reserve can help preserve the extraordinary biodiversity and enable local people to improve their livelihoods. She further said that this project is part of the ITTO–Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Collaborative Initiative for Tropical Forest Biodiversity. The partnership between ITTO and CBD, launched in 2011 and extended to 2025, is focused on supporting ITTO members and CBD parties to advance the Kunming–Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework and Global Forest Goals.

The Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework contains quite ambitious targets which will become one of the references for formulating biodiversity plans and policies at the national level. There are 4 (four) key elements of the global framework in 2050 which are elaborated with 23 targets that are expected to be achieved in 2030. These targets are grouped into 3 (three) major issues, namely: 8 (eight) targets for reducing the risk of threats to biodiversity; 5 (five) targets for meeting community needs through sustainable use and benefit sharing; and 10 (ten) targets to support its implementation and mainstreaming.

Indonesia is recognized as a mega-biodiversity country. All aspects of life are greatly influenced by biodiversity. When biodiversity has a problem, humanity has a problem. Loss of biodiversity threatens everything, including health.

We know that the world is facing a crisis of ecosystem degradation that is increasing the loss of biodiversity and compromising the well-being of more than 3 billion people. Therefore, Indonesia is committed to continuing to be a role model in implementing national strategies and actions to protect biodiversity.

In 2022, Indonesia through the Ministry of Environment and Forestry released more than 135 thousand animals back to their habitat. Nearly 106 thousand animals have been born, including superior species that are a priority in conservation efforts. Indonesia has also restored an ecosystem of around 72 thousand hectares which will have an impact on the quality of wildlife habitat.

Most recently in 2023, the President of Indonesia issued Presidential Instruction Number 1 of 2023 concerning Mainstreaming the Conservation of Biodiversity in Sustainable Development. Indonesia launched the concept of Biodiversity Sensitive Development. This means that development and policies must pay attention to the aspects of conservation, sustainability, and wise use of biodiversity.


Writer : Tutik Sriyati, Dyah Puspasari

Editor : Yayuk Siswiyanti

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