Indonesia’s blue carbon potential accounts for 17% of the world’s blue carbon reservoir. As a part of Indonesia’s national treasure, blue carbon management must be prioritized.
If blue carbon management continues to be strengthened along with adaptation and mitigation of climate change, it could contribute to reducing carbon emissions by 29% nationally and 41% globally by 2030 (G20, 2022), gaining an economic income of at least US$ 248 billion or around Rp. 3.540 trillion through various carbon credit schemes for Indonesia (CIDES Indonesia, 2021) and empowering local coastal farmers.
RELEVANT SUSTAINABLE GOALS
To maximize and utilize Indonesia’s blue carbon ecosystem, CarbonEthics initiated an annual forum event named Warung Kopi Karbon Biru to focus on increasing societies’ awareness of the condition and potential of blue carbon in Indonesia. In the third year of Warung Kopi Karbon Biru, CarbonEthics strives to raise the societies’ understanding and consciousness on issues related to blue carbon governance in Indonesia under the theme “Escalating the Readiness of Blue Carbon Project in Indonesia,” which was held on October 28th, 2022.
Warung Kopi Biru By CarbonEthics
Since it was initiated in 2020, Warung Kopi Karbon Biru has successfully channeled direct communications to harmonize perspectives and mapped the interests of each organization or institution involved. It captured best practices and consolidated recommendations from relevant stakeholders to improve the existing blue carbon project, which includes the government, social enterprises, and NGOs.
This year’s attended participants were: The Coordinating Ministry for Maritime and Investments Affairs, Ministry of Marine and Fisheries, Alcott Group, Conservation International, Forest Carbon, Indonesia Commodity and Derivative Exchange (ICDX), the David & Lucile Packard Foundation, RARE Indonesia, South Pole, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Wildlife Works, World Research Institute (WRI) Indonesia, and Yayasan Pesisir Lestari.
The event started with a keynote speech from Andreas Hutahaean, Ph.D., Deputy Director at the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs. Under the topic “From Mangrove Restorations Toward Carbon Pricing,” he mentioned that in 2020-2024 the ocean and wetlands became Indonesia’s new priority sector that acts as a nature-based solution to adapt and mitigate climate change.
“Blue carbon has the potential to support Indonesia’s commitment to Net Zero Emission,” said Andreas. “Mangrove rehabilitation, as a part of the blue carbon ecosystems, could contribute to decreasing the carbon emission from the Agriculture, Forest, and Other Land Use (AFOLU) sector.”
He further elaborated in his speech on the connection between carbon pricing and non-carbon benefits using the Climate, Community, and Biodiversity (CCB) Standards (a standard focusing on simultaneously addressing climate change, supporting local communities and smallholders, and conserving biodiversity) (Climate Standards, 2022).
The forum discussion was dissolved into two chambers: the “Institutional and System Challenges” and the “Implementation Challenges.” The first chamber – facilitated by Rizky Januar from World Research Institute (WRI) Indonesia – discussed the trend and current political situation of blue carbon governance ranging from policy mechanisms to enable blue carbon projects, ideal governance scheme (institutional and authorities of blue carbon projects) in Indonesia, and financing policy schemes. Some notorious organizations joined this chamber, including the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime and Investments Affairs, Ministry of Marine and Fisheries, Alcott Group, Indonesia Commodity and Derivative Exchange (ICDX), RARE Indonesia, Wildlife Works, World Research Institute (WRI) Indonesia.
The second chamber, facilitated by Barakalla Robyn from Yayasan Pesisir Lestari, discussed the problems around the blue carbon project implementation in Indonesia. In general, there are three topics discussed such as project set-up and applicable Standardization for Measurement, Reporting, and Verification (MRV) Instruments, financing options, the implementation of blue carbon project at non-forest estate (other land use), and ultimate beneficiaries for community-based blue carbon project. The participants included in this chamber were the Ministry of Marine and Fisheries, Alcott Group, Conservation International, Forest Carbon, the David & Lucile Packard Foundation, South Pole, and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The main discussions in both chambers were the importance of understanding blue carbon at the grassroots level and the government’s lenient action to implement the blue carbon policies.
Climate education is unfamiliar to locals, which limits their involvement
Unfamiliarity with climate education limits the involvement of the local people in the blue carbon projects. To this date, there has yet to be recorded data about the number of locals assigned as project proponents. Involving prominent local leaders in carbon projects could increase capacity building and raise a sense of belonging among the people. Also, local’s involvement could mean receiving direct benefits from the related carbon projects.
Therefore, implementing a bottom-up mechanism is needed to advance an inclusive blue carbon project. A bottom-up mechanism involves 1) capacity building for the local community as a way for them to participate and discuss blue carbon management policy and 2) a collaborative government that establishes and strictly implements inclusive blue carbon policies.
Furthermore, enabling a financial deepening is a recommendation proposed regarding a blue carbon funding scheme for mangrove conservation. This chamber concluded that it is necessary to plan collaborative action between the government with fintech or security crowdfunding.
A conducive and interactive discussion filled the air in the Warkop Karbon Biru event room. CarbonEthics hopes the discussions and recommendations gathered at this event could assist the government, private and public sectors in strengthening Indonesia’s blue carbon ecosystem. CarbonEthics also expects a discussion event like this could encourage individuals to advocate blue carbon conservation.