Deforestation of Indonesia’s jungles is releasing carbon pollution back into the atmosphere, driving the bulk of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Indonesiais not among the countries with the highest amount of emissions coming from industry or the energy sector, but the widespread deforestation its jungles are subjected to is causing the release of carbon pollution back into the atmosphere, thus making Indonesia the world’s fifth biggest emitter.
With the aim of achieving a 26% or more emissions cut by 2020 compared to business as usual levels, former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono had implemented the so-called “forest moratorium”, a policy protecting some of the country’s forests that called for no new licenses to convert primary forests and peat lands for other uses such as timber or palm oil. The moratorium has been extended in 2013, and now is up for renewal again; extending it one again would further demonstrate the Indonesian government’s commitment to tackling climate change.
New researches conducted by the World Resources Institute (WRI), the Center for Global Development and others on the moratorium’s impacts on climate found that thanks to this policy Indonesia has reduced emissions from forest clearing by 1-2,5% over a four-year period, which is a good but insufficient result, still far from the country’s 26% goal and from the reductions needed to keep global temperature rise below 2°C compared to pre-industrial levels.
In order to strengthen the moratorium’s effectiveness, the Indonesian government should firstly increase local awareness and understanding of the policy, thus giving local governments the chance to weigh in on how it is designed and implemented. Moreover, it should stop allowing exceptions for “national development projects”, and should focus on increasing yields through different measures instead. Lastly, Indonesia should implement long-term policies, for example by signing agreements with countries willing to provide funding for forest conservations (as it has already happened with Norway).
The gLAWcal Team
Monday, 11 May 2015
This news has been realized by gLAWcal—Global Law Initiatives for Sustainable Development in collaboration with the University Institute of European Studies (IUSE) in Turin, Italy and the University of Piemonte Orientale, Novara, Italy which are both beneficiaries of the European Union Research Executive Agency IRSES Project “Liberalism in Between Europe And China” (LIBEAC) coordinated by Aix-Marseille University (CEPERC). This work has been realized in the framework of Workpackages 4, coordinated by University Institute of European Studies (IUSE) in Turin, Italy.