Earlier this year, we received funding from Indonesia Climate Change Trust Fund (ICCTF) to support our Conservation Programme in the Sabangau Forest.
The main activities carried out by our conservation team, with the support of the ICCTF grant, are the establishment of a Community Firefighting Teams (Masyarakat Peduli Api – MPA), reforestation, habitat restoration, socialisation to local stakeholders, socialisation to schools and health centres in communities near the Sabangau Forest. All in one year!
Socialisation activities to stakeholders began in May, followed by socialisation for the establishment of MPA in Sabaru and Kereng Bangkirai villages. Throughout the month of May, we have conducted socialisations aimed at explaining BNF conservation activities in Natural Laboratory of Peat-swamp Forest (NLPSF) in the Sabangau Forest.
Following socialisations in Sabaru and Kereng Bangkirai, the conservation team continued to meet with nearby communities to discuss the formation of the MPA teams. On June 6 and 7 we will begin preparation of the MPA work programme. The MPA was formed not only to extinguish fires in the Sabangau Forest, but also to fight fires in residential areas in Sabaru and Kereng Bangkirai; directly benefitting the local communities.
Our conservation activities in Sabangau aim to restore the condition of the peat-swamp forest; home to the world’s largest orangutan population. In 2015 many areas burned in Sabangau so now the orangutans’ forest home has become smaller and less resources (e.g. food and territories) are available.
The Sabangau Forest is also one of the largest carbon stores in the world, so it is important to restore the condition of the Sabangau peat. The carbon released during the fires in 2015 has contributed considerablely to climate change.
Socialisation to key stakeholders is important so that the public and government know the importance of keeping the forest of Sabangau save for orangutans and other wildlife as well as nearby communities. (DN)