Indonesia is a country with abundant natural resources, but the environment is degrading at an unprecedented fast rate. Indonesia ranks as the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases, but unlike the two countries that top the list, the main contributors of Indonesia’s emissions are forest fires and deforestation. Climate change will affect not only the environment, but also people and economy. Climate change has already led to the increase of natural disasters such as floods and drought, as well as forest fires and adverse effects on crop growth (Measey, 2010)

Reforestation can mitigate these disastrous impacts. For example, in both developed and developing countries, trees are being used as windbreaks to shelter crops, prevent erosion and protect the soil. Forests can also enhance water quality in other ways. Studies in Nigeria, Indonesia and other countries have shown that with deforestation, minerals and nutrients that are typically absorbed or recycled by trees now make their way unchecked into drainage water, thus polluting the fresh water. Forests also play a big role in the carbon cycle by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, thus reducing the impact of global warming.

The “Jumpun Pambelom and Tane Pambelom” (our Pilot Project) Peat Forest was originally an Ex-HPH (Forest Concession Rights) area or ex logging concession which operated from 1973 to 1993. Due to forest fires, the areas are now degraded and heavily damaged. The 150-hectare Tane Pambelom has been burned. So we will focus first on restoring 60 hectares by planting trees, and we hope to restore the rest of the area in the coming years. The 20-hectare Jampun Pambelom has been restored by Bapak Janu Minro, the land owner, and we will cooperate with him to make sure this area remains preserved.