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Hutan adat dan pengelolaan kayu: langkah ke depan bagi Indonesia

By Satrio A. Wicaksono and Paramita L. Iswari


Masyarakat adat melindungi, mengelola, dan memanfaatkan hutan mereka dengan berbagai cara. Misalnya, beberapa masyarakat adat menebang dan menjual kayu yang mereka peroleh sebagai sumber mata pencaharian.  Penelitian terbaru menunjukkan bahwa dukungan yang diberikan kepada masyarakat adat untuk mengelola hutan yang menjadi sumber mata pencaharian mereka akan membantu mengurangi laju deforestasi di negara-negara tropis.

Sejak zaman dahulu, masyarakat adat Padang Hilalang di Provinsi Sumatra Barat, Indonesia, mengelola 20.000 hektare hutan di dekat daerah pemukiman mereka.  Di daerah ini, sama seperti di wilayah adat lainnya, masyarakat tidak memiliki hak penuh untuk secara legal menebang, menjual atau mengangkut kayu. Hal ini dikarenakan pohon yang tumbuh secara alami di kawasan hutan adat tidak diatur dalam Sistem Verifikasi Legalitas Kayu – SVLK, yang digunakan untuk memastikan legalitas kayu yang berasal dari hutan negara dan hutan hak di Indonesia.
 

Mengakomodir kayu dari hutan adat dalam Sistem Verifikasi Legalitas Kayu Indonesia

EU REDD Facility melakukan studi melalui kerja sama dengan Organisasi Masyarakat Sipil Indonesia (KARSA) untuk mengeksplorasi berbagai opsi dalam mengintegrasikan hutan adat ke dalam SVLK Indonesia serta melakukan penilaian terhadap berbagai opsi produksi dan perdagangan kayu yang berasal dari hutan adat secara legal dan berkelanjutan. Padang Hilalang adalah salah satu dari tiga masyarakat adat yang tercakup di dalam studi ini. Dua kelompok masyarakat lainnya adalah Dayak Tomun di Kalimantan Barat dan Oktim Orya di Papua. Studi tersebut menyoroti kesenjangan antara penebangan kayu dan penjualan kayu yang dilakukan oleh masyarakat adat saat ini, dengan peraturan yang ada tentang pemanfaatan dan penatausahaan hasil hutan.

Penelitian lapangan dalam studi ini menyediakan informasi tentang bagaimana masyarakat adat tersebut berupaya untuk mendapatkan pengakuan hukum atas status kepemilikan dan hak mereka atas hutan tersebut, cara mereka mengelola hutan dan hasil hutan kayu, serta tantangan yang mereka hadapi dan aspirasi mereka terkait pengelolaan hutan dan kayu.

Studi yang dilakukan – “Potensi untuk mengintegrasikan hutan adat ke dalam Sistem Verifikasi Legalitas Kayu (SVLK) Indonesia” – mencakup analisis hukum yang mendalam dan dilakukan untuk mendukung klausul yang ada di dalam Kesepakatan Kemitraan Sukarela (VPA) antara Indonesia dan Uni Eropa (EU) tentang Penegakan Hukum, Tata Kelola, dan Perdagangan Sektor Kehutanan (FLEGT). Klausul tersebut menyatakan bahwa harus disertakan perubahan terkait hutan adat di dalam prosedur SVLK untuk mencerminkan pengadopsian putusan penting Mahkamah Konstitusi Indonesia tahun 2013, yang membatalkan ketentuan dalam Undang-Undang tentang Kehutanan yang menyatakan bahwa hutan adat adalah bagian dari Kawasan Hutan Negara. FLEGT VPA adalah kesepakatan perdagangan bilateral yang mengikat secara hukum serta bertujuan untuk meningkatkan tata kelola hutan dan mendorong perdagangan kayu legal dari Indonesia ke EU.


Diskusi dengan ninik mamak (ketua adat) masyarakat adat Padang Hilalang di Sumatra Barat, Indonesia. Sumber: Pandong Spenra, KARSA

Praktik penebangan dan perdagangan kayu saat ini

Di Padang Hilalang, tanah adat masuk ke dalam dua kategori hutan yang ditetapkan oleh Pemerintah, yaitu 'hutan produksi' dan 'area penggunaan lain'.  Tetua adat masyarakat, yakni para ninik mamak, memberi arahan pengelolaan tanah adat dan sumber daya, yang mencakup komoditas kayu.  Dalam lima tahun terakhir, masyarakat adat ini telah mengizinkan dua perusahaan setempat untuk menebang kayu dari tanah masyarakat adat yang berstatus 'area penggunaan lain'.  Peraturan yang berlaku tentang legalitas kayu menetapkan bahwa tidak semua jenis kayu dari hutan hak dapat ditebang.  Hanya kayu yang “dibudidayakan” dari tegakan pohon non-alami yang dapat ditebang di wilayah adat. 

Dalam inventarisasi tegakan sebelum penebangan, masyarakat adat Padang Hilalang memastikan bahwa perusahaan hanya akan menebang jenis kayu tertentu yang berada di luar daerah keramat bagi masyarakat, seperti makam leluhur. Inventarisasi juga melibatkan petugas dari Kesatuan Pengelolaan Hutan terdekat yang dibentuk oleh Pemerintah. Selama ini, penebangan kayu telah dilakukan di kurang dari sepuluh persen tanah adat Padang Hilalang.  

Kesepakatan antara masyarakat adat dan perusahaan yang melakukan penebangan mencakup mekanisme pembagian keuntungan berdasarkan volume dan jenis kayu yang ditebang. Perusahaan juga membantu menyiapkan dokumen angkutan kayu yang diperlukan, yang akan diterbitkan oleh anggota masyarakat adat.  Nota Angkutan yang dilengkapi dengan surat yang menjelaskan status tanah adat yang dikeluarkan oleh ninik mamak akan memastikan legalitas kayu yang dipanen di areal penggunaan lain Padang Hilalang.  Kayu yang berasal dari Padang Hilalang umumnya digunakan sebagai material untuk industri mebel di provinsi Sumatra Barat.
 

Jalur untuk mendapatkan pengakuan hutan adat

Masyarakat adat Padang Hilalang, seperti sebagian masyarakat adat di daerah-daerah lain di Indonesia, berharap agar Pemerintah mengizinkan mereka menebang kayu dari seluruh bagian tanah mereka.  Bagi mereka, kesempatan untuk menebang kayu – kayu budidaya dan kayu alam – merepresentasikan pengakuan atas hak mereka dalam mengelola hutan mereka sendiri. Apalagi, menurut mereka,  perusahaan penebangan kayu telah diberikan hak untuk menebang kayu alam dan kayu budidaya selama beberapa dekade. 

Secara teoritis, setelah dicabutnya ketentuan dalam UU Kehutanan yang menetapkan bahwa hutan adat merupakan bagian dari kawasan hutan negara, ratusan masyarakat adat di seluruh Indonesia – seperti masyarakat Padang Hilalang – kini dapat mengklaim kepemilikan atas hutan setelah klaim mereka diakui Pemerintah. 

Proses yang dijalankan oleh Kementerian Lingkungan Hidup dan Kehutanan Indonesia menawarkan jalur persetujuan yang paling progresif dalam proses pengakuan hutan adat. Walaupun demikian, jalur ini membutuhkan proses yang terdiri dari dua langkah.  Perwakilan masyarakat adat hanya dapat mengajukan permohonan pengakuan hutan adat setelah masyarakat adat tersebut telah diakui melalui peraturan tingkat kabupaten dan/atau keputusan bupati.


Tanda yang menunjukkan nama dan batas jorong masyarakat adat Padang Hilalang. Di Sumatra Barat, jorong mengacu pada sekelompok rumah tangga dalam pemukiman masyarakat atau desa. Sumber: Pandong Spenra, KARSA
 

Mengurangi ilegalitas dan deforestasi dengan mengakui hutan adat

Amendemen SVLK untuk mengintegrasikan kayu dari hutan adat sesuai dengan mandat Kesepakatan Kemitraan Sukarela antara Indonesia dan Uni Eropa tentang Penegakan Hukum, Tata Kelola dan Perdagangan Sektor Kehutanan akan menyediakan sumber mata pencaharian bagi masyarakat adat, sekaligus mengurangi ilegalitas, deforestasi, dan degradasi hutan.

Masyarakat adat di Padang Hilalang belum diakui sebagai masyarakat adat berdasarkan  hukum Indonesia dan proses untuk mendapatkan pengakuan sebagai sebuah masyarakat adat membutuhkan banyak biaya dan memakan waktu.  Mereka sudah mulai melibatkan akademisi dari universitas di ibu kota provinsi untuk meningkatkan peluang mendapatkan pengakuan tersebut, serta merasa yakin bahwa ke depan mereka dapat mengelola produksi kayu secara berkelanjutan dan memenuhi persyaratan SVLK untuk melakukan penebangan kayu alam.
 

Mendukung masyarakat adat untuk mengelola hutan secara legal dan lestari

Dari hasil analisis hukum, penelitian lapangan, dan konsultasi multi-pihak, EU REDD Facility dan KARSA telah mengusulkan serangkaian standar dan pedoman verifikasi legalitas kayu khusus untuk hutan adat. Langkah-langkah persiapan tambahan juga telah diidentifikasi untuk mendukung masyarakat adat dalam mengelola hutan mereka secara lestari, serta untuk berpartisipasi dalam sistem verifikasi legalitas kayu, jika mereka berencana untuk menebang dan menjual hasil hutan secara komersial. 

Studi tersebut, yang akan memberikan informasi bagi proses revisi kebijakan tentang SVLK dan hutan adat yang tengah dilakukan oleh Kementerian Lingkungan Hidup dan Kehutanan berkoordinasi dengan para pemangku kepentingan, merekomendasikan hal-hal berikut:

  • Mempercepat proses pengakuan hutan adat, misalnya dengan menggabungkan proses pengakuan masyarakat adat dengan proses pengakuan hutan adat.
  • Menjadikan proses standar verifikasi legalitas kayu yang tengah diajukan ini sebagai jalur untuk melakukan penebangan kayu secara legal, serta menyediakan bantuan yang dibutuhkan untuk melindungi dari penebangan kayu yang berlebihan dan penyalahgunaan hutan adat.

Secara bersama-sama, upaya-upaya ini seharusnya dapat melindungi hutan adat dari penyalahgunaan dalam bentuk penebangan kayu secara ilegal, sembari meningkatkan kesetaraan bagi kelompok adat.
 


Satrio A.  Wicaksono

Land-use governance expert

EU REDD Facility

 


Paramita L. Iswari

Head

Circle for Rural and Agrarian Reform (KARSA)

 

Customary forests and timber management: a way forward in Indonesia

By Satrio A. Wicaksono and Paramita L. Iswari


Customary and indigenous groups protect, manage, and use their forests in many ways, some relying on logging and the timber trade to support their livelihoods. Supporting customary groups to manage forests that they depend on helps reduce deforestation in tropical countries, recent research suggests.

In Indonesia’s West Sumatra Province, the Padang Hilalang community has traditionally managed some 20 000 hectares of forest near their settlement. Here, as in other customary areas, the community does not have full rights to legally harvest, sell or transport timber. This is because trees growing naturally in customary forests are not regulated under the country’s timber legality assurance system (Sistem Verifikasi Legalitas Kayu – the SVLK), which ensures the legality of timber sourced from Indonesia’s state and private forests.
 

Accommodating customary forest timber in Indonesia’s timber legality assurance system

To explore options for integrating customary forests into Indonesia’s SVLK and to assess options for legal and sustainable production and trade of timber from customary forests, the EU REDD Facility undertook a study in collaboration with the Indonesian Civil Society Organisation KARSA. Padang Hilalang was one of three customary communities covered by the study. The other two were Dayak Tomun in West Kalimantan and Oktim Orya in Papua. The research highlighted gaps between current timber harvesting and trading practices by customary groups, and existing regulations on use and administration of timber.

The field research component of the study provided insights on how these communities work toward legal recognition of their status and rights over forests, how they manage their forests and timber products, and the challenges they face and their aspiration in relation to forest and timber management.

The overall study – “Potential integration of customary forests into Indonesia’s national timber legality assurance system (SVLK)” – includes an extensive legal analysis, and was conducted in support of a clause in the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) between Indonesia and the European Union (EU) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance, and Trade (FLEGT). The clause states that changes in the SVLK procedures related to customary forests shall be introduced to reflect the adoption of a landmark ruling in 2013 by Indonesia’s Constitutional Court ruling, repealing the provision in Indonesia’s Forestry Act stating that customary forests are a part of the State Forest Area. The FLEGT VPA is a legally binding bilateral trade agreement that aims to improve forest governance and promote trade in legal timber from Indonesia to the EU.


Discussion with the ninik mamak, or customary heads, of the Padang Hilalang customary community in West Sumatra, Indonesia by Pandong Spenra, KARSA
 

Existing practice of timber harvesting and trading

In Padang Hilalang, customary land straddles two categories of forest as defined by the Government, which are ‘production forest’ and ‘other use area’. The community customary heads, known as ninik mamak, direct the management of customary land and resources, including timber. In the past five years, they have given the rights to two local companies to harvest timber from the customary community’s land under the ‘other use area’ status. Per existing regulations on timber legality, not all timber from the private forest can be harvested, however. Only “cultivated” timber from the non-natural standing stock can be logged in this customary area.

During the stand inventory before harvesting, Padang Hilalang customary community members ensure that the companies will only log certain timber situated outside the community’s sacred area, such as the ancestors’ graves. The inventory also involves officers from nearby forest management unit established by the Government. Thus far, timber harvesting has been conducted in less than ten percent of the Padang Hilalang customary land.

The agreement between the customary community and the harvesting companies includes benefit-sharing mechanisms based on the volume and type of timber harvested. The companies also help prepare the required timber transport documents, issued by the customary community members. Together with the letter explaining the land’s customary status issued by the ninik mamak, the transport documents ensure the legality of timber harvested in Padang Hilalang’s other use area. Timber from Padang Hilalang has mainly been used as materials for the furniture industry in the province.
 

A path towards customary forest recognition

The Padang Hilalang customary community, like some communities in other parts of Indonesia, would like the Government to consider allowing them to harvest timber from all parts of their land. For them, the opportunity to harvest timber – cultivated and natural – would represent the right to manage their own forests. After all, they argue, logging companies have been given rights to log both natural and cultivated timber for decades.

Theoretically, as a result of the 2013 Constitutional Court repeal of the provision in the Forestry Act defining customary forests as part of the state forest area, hundreds of customary communities across Indonesia – such as the Padang Hilalang community – are now allowed to claim forest ownership through recognition by the Government.

The process administered by the Indonesian Ministry of Environment and Forestry offers the most well-developed route for customary forest recognition. Even then, this path requires a two-step process. Representatives of customary communities may only submit applications for customary forests once the communities themselves have been recognised through a district-level regulation and/or a decree of the district head.


A sign showing the name and the boundary of a jorong within the Padang Hilalang customary community. In West Sumata, jorong refers to a group of households within a community’s settlement or village by Pandong Spenra, KARSA
 

Reducing illegality and deforestation by recognising customary forests

Amending the SVLK to integrate timber from customary forests as per the mandate of the Voluntary Partnership Agreement between Indonesia and the European Union on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade would open up livelihood opportunities for customary groups, while also reducing illegality, deforestation, and forest degradation.

The community in Padang Hilalang has not yet been recognised as a customary community according to the Indonesian law, and the process to recognise the customary communities can be an expensive and time-consuming undertaking on its own. They have begun to engage with academics from a university in the provincial capital to help strengthen their case for recognition, confident that they can manage timber production sustainably and meet SVLK requirements for harvesting natural timber.
 

Supporting customary communities to manage their forests legally and sustainably 

Based on legal analyses, field research, and multi-stakeholder consultations, the EU REDD Facility and KARSA have proposed a set of timber legality verification standards and guidelines specific for customary forests. Additional preparatory steps have also been identified to support customary communities to manage their forests sustainably, and to participate in the legality assurance system, should they plan to harvest and sell timber commercially.

The study, which will inform ongoing policy revisions on SVLK and customary forests led by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry in coordination with stakeholders, recommends:

  • Expediting the process for customary forests recognition, for example by combining the step to recognise the existence of customary communities with the step to recognise customary forests.
  • Having the proposed legality verification standards as a pathway for harvesting timber legally, along with the necessary assistance to serve as safeguards against overexploitation of timber and misuse of customary forests.

Together, these steps should safeguard against misuse of customary forests for illegal timber, while advancing equity for customary groups. 
 


Satrio A.  Wicaksono

Land-use governance expert

EU REDD Facility

 


Paramita L. Iswari

Head

Circle for Rural and Agrarian Reform (KARSA)

 

A new transparency pathway to decoupling commodity trade from deforestation

By Thomas Sembres



Global supply chains are notoriously complex and opaque, making it very difficult to address sustainability issues in mainstream markets – including deforestation, sustainable livelihoods, child labour and land grabbing.

In recent years, however, there’s been a surge of global supply chain transparency instruments, data and analysis to help company and government efforts to stop deforestation associated with commodity trade. These include:

  • online databases
  • dashboards
  • scorecards
  • traceability platforms
  • interactive maps
  • independent local monitoring initiatives

These advances in supply-chain transparency are transforming capacities to identify more systematically the greatest opportunities for action. For instance, subnational data analysis across major commodity producing countries in the tropics shows that the vast majority of deforestation linked to the production and trade of agricultural commodities occurs in a handful of places where the commodities are produced.

However, this is not where efforts to manage deforestation risks in commodity supply chains are systematically concentrated. 
 

Traditional approaches to tracking forest-risk commodities

Traditional approaches to tracing and verifying forest-risk commodities rarely penetrate a market far enough to be able to separate the bad from the good, at scale. The bad is often kept hidden in complex and opaque supply chains. Good practices like sustainable production don’t get the market visibility they deserve, and thus often fail to receive incentives from commodity markets to sustain their efforts.

The following are illustrations of the proportion of total world production covered by a sustainability certification scheme (green) versus the proportion that concentrates 80% of commodity-driven deforestation within four global supply chains (red). These are estimations made by EFI based on various sources.
 

Initial situation: efforts and risks disconnected

Share of the world production covered by a sustainability certification scheme (green) versus the proportion concentrating 80% of commodity-driven deforestation in four global supply chains (red) extrapolated from patterns of the largest producing tropical countries for each of these supply chains (Brazil, Indonesia, Argentina and Côte d’Ivoire).
 

This is a situation without prioritisation of efforts, with a high disconnect between areas concentrating the highest risks and voluntary certification and verification efforts.

Clearly, the data revolution alone is not enough. Many actors are overwhelmed with information or remain unable to seize the opportunities that it can provide. Increasingly, the most significant challenge is making data useful for specific policy purposes, based on shared understanding of trusted information.
 

A new approach: the Transparency Pathway

A new approach is possible: one that leverages transparency at both ends of major agricultural commodity supply chains, and that can turn policy aspirations into pragmatic measures to decouple deforestation and trade.

Our new Transparency Pathway offers a pragmatic method to shift commodity markets towards sustainability, by harnessing the potential of existing information and transparency instruments.
 

Transparency Pathway: Channelling efforts towards risks

In this situation, efforts are channelled towards risk areas through the Transparency Pathway, after agreeing on a risk-based mechanism with stricter requirements (e.g. mandatory third-party verification) for high-risk areas only. This also enables reducing the burden of proof on producers in low-risk areas.
 

Six steps for harnessing the power of data

The Transparency Pathway is a tested method that builds on our experience in supply chain transparency in various countries. In particular, it draws on our partnership with Trase, the first initiative to unlock subnational supply chain transparency at scale in tropical countries.

The method charts six pragmatic steps designed to make collaboration between public and private supply chain actors more impactful and inclusive, while reducing costs and gaining positive visibility in global commodity markets. Incremental information disclosure is used as a mechanism to reduce information asymmetry among actors, improve governance and support increased accountability.

The six steps are:

  1. Building trust by engaging stakeholders
  2. Measuring subnational commodity deforestation
  3. Assessing jurisdictional sustainability
  4. Tracking supply chains to jurisdictions
  5. Establishing a central point of information
  6. Independent monitoring

These steps are adaptable to the country and supply chain context, and the whole process can be applied to any measurable sustainability issue.
 

A jurisdictional approach

We have chosen to take a jurisdictional approach in the Transparency Pathway for several reasons:

  • Possibilities for balancing detail and scale.
    Jurisdictional approaches provide a middle ground between finer approaches that are impossible or too costly to implement at scale, in the absence or incompleteness of property-level data on deforestation, production and supply chain connections; and on the other hand, coarser scale approaches. These may be risk analysis at national level that cannot have the necessary finesse for targeted and proportionate interventions, ending up with much fewer levers for action. 
  • A strategy to include vulnerable actors.
    Traditional farm-level certification approaches tend to exclude the people with the greatest needs, such as small-scale farmers and indigenous communities. This is because they usually place the burden of proof on commodity producers. Small-scale producers rarely have the skills and resources needed to meet this burden of proof and obtain certification. Small-scale producers can also struggle to meet sustainability standards if their land is not zoned for legally planting crops, if administrative procedures are complex, or if official monitoring and law enforcement are not fairly or evenly directed. Only the government and local authorities can address these governance issues.
  • Recognition of government authority to control land use and supply chains.
    The advantage of involving local governments is that they often have the authority and legitimacy to implement sustainability policies – and sometimes, in decentralised systems, to issue regulations – that cover the entire land area under their control. They may also have the authority to monitor and enforce relevant laws and regulations. When their authority is limited, through their institutional connections and the involvement of the national administration, they can leverage regulatory changes at the necessary level. Adopting a jurisdictional approach in monitoring enables building on existing national information systems as much as possible.
  • A strategy to reduce the risk of leakage across supply chains and territories.
    Deforestation, water contamination, and child labour are among many challenges that unfortunately have a great capacity to shift across places and supply chains. These ‘leakage effects’ are a constant concern in efforts to reduce deforestation and forest degradation. Jurisdictional approaches allow for going beyond the inevitable fragmentation of other approaches that would focus on just one supply chain or group of actors in a territory. ‘Free riders’ or ‘poor performers’ don’t go unnoticed and peer pressure from other supply chain actors can help bring them on board. Leakage effects may still occur between jurisdictions, hence the interest in nesting a subnational jurisdictional approach within a national process. This is the approach taken in the Transparency Pathway, inspired by the Terpercaya experience in Indonesia.
     

A guide to decoupling commodity trade from deforestation

Governments, supply chain organisations and anyone convening a multi-stakeholder process to improve the sustainability, governance and reputation of a sector or supply chain will find the Transparency Pathway a practical guide for harnessing the transformative potential of data.

Its principles have been informed by several initiatives supporting the sustainability of commodity supply chains. These initiatives have facilitated constructive engagement among stakeholders, and made the Transparency Pathway a tested way to inform domestic policy making, investment decisions and commodity trade.

We invite you to explore the method further – take a look at the new Transparency Pathway website and don’t hesitate to get in touch for more information.

 


Thomas Sembres

Supply chain transparency and land-use planning

EU REDD Facility

 

The EU REDD Facility’s 10 lessons for ending tropical deforestation

By Christophe van Orshoven


Since its inception a decade ago, the EU REDD Facility’s ambition has been to support dialogue and partnership between state and non-state actors to strengthen efforts to ensure tropical forests meet their potential to limit climate change.

As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of our Facility, we’re taking the opportunity to reflect on lessons learned over these years, as we worked towards empowering stakeholders to strengthen the rule of law, promoting sustainable land use and investment, and enhancing supply chain transparency.

It’s fitting that we share these insights as the 14th edition of the EU Development Days on the Green Deal for a Sustainable Future gets underway. The EU has a strong track record of global leadership in dealing with deforestation and forest degradation, and the European Green Deal commits to measures to support deforestation-free value chains. Our work is aligned with this ambitious response to the continued widespread destruction of the world's forests.

Significant progress has been made over the past few years towards ending deforestation and understanding the drivers and solutions to this complex problem. Yet governments, the private sector and citizens all over the world need to urgently step up action to protect and restore the world’s forests. We hope that the lessons we have learned over the past decade help to shape and accelerate future action: Ending tropical deforestation: 10 lessons for laying the foundations

1. There must be clear and well-enforced legal frameworks for land use.

Unclear legal frameworks — and a lack of implementation and compliance with these frameworks — often lead to illegal land allocation and forest conversion, including for the expansion of commercial agriculture. Giving forest and agriculture sector actors incentives to comply with the law strengthens efforts to make commodity production and trade deforestation-free. It also promotes better land-use governance and helps achieve climate targets.

2. Participatory and informed land-use planning is key to reduce land conflicts and deforestation.

Inclusion and collaboration are important for designing and implementing land-use plans. If all stakeholders at different levels – including local communities and organisations – are involved in important official decisions about land use, there is more compliance with land laws, and more sustainable outcomes are achieved for everyone.

3. Partnership approaches build an enabling environment for sustainable land-use.

Clarifying definitions and responsibilities, sharing credible information for decision-makers, and fostering trust between partners builds transparency and accountability in the forest and land-use sectors. These efforts build an enabling environment for forest-friendly development and investment, and help countries put their climate change targets into action.

4. Open, reliable information on global forest-risk commodity supply chains is needed to build trust on both sides of the trade. 

The complexity and opacity of global supply chains has made it difficult to tackle deforestation in mainstream markets. For most commodities with deforestation risks, there’s simply no information to support action and policy implementation. Improving supply-chain transparency helps to hold global supply chain players – including producing and consuming governments – accountable to their commitments to deal with deforestation and risks linked to products in their supply chains.

5. Consensus on definitions and data is needed to track progress towards sustainability.

Agreed sustainability definitions and monitoring systems help authorities improve their governance of land and forests. By developing these indicators through multistakeholder consultation, trust and legitimacy are entrenched. Using simple and objective ways to verify sustainability performance, grounded in national laws and regulations, is a mutually beneficial approach for producer and consumer countries.

6. Nationally Determined Contributions offer opportunities raise the profile of forest and land-use governance.

The majority of tropical countries have integrated forests and agriculture into their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Robust and participatory NDC processes offer opportunities to address the drivers of deforestation by combining climate, aid and trade-related interventions, and raising the profile of forest and land use governance. Failing to address underlying governance drivers of deforestation puts the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change at risk.

7. Community forestry can improve livelihoods and achieve climate commitments.

Communities protect, manage, and use their forests in many ways. Some rely on logging and the timber trade to make a living. This trade needs to be economically viable and support livelihoods, while at the same time supporting sustainable management and protecting against deforestation. Legal timber production can unlock livelihood opportunities for vulnerable groups, while also reducing illegality, deforestation, and forest degradation.

8. Tracking investments in land-use helps to deploy resources for supporting forest and climate objectives.

Tropical forest countries can get valuable support from international public finance sources to help achieve their climate and forest goals, but these funds can’t meet the scale of investment needed. By presenting a transparent analysis of land-use investments and plans to improve the coherence of forest and climate-friendly spending, countries can attract private finance and make the case for more international support. There are opportunities to redirect the hundreds of billions spent annually on land-use activities around the world towards low emissions, without sacrificing productivity or economic development.

9. Socio-economic factors driving smallholder land-use decisions must be considered.

Smallholder farmers are central to the transition towards sustainable production, but they can’t invest in sustainable practices when they live in poverty and have limited access to finance. For change to happen at scale, initiatives offering financial incentives to smallholders must not only support the initial costs of agroforestry and replantation, but also provide opportunities to diversify their incomes. Understanding the economy of smallholders and the potential profitability of new production models is a prerequisite for transitioning towards more sustainable land-use practices.

10. Commodity and trade approaches provide a powerful lever for governance reform.

To address forest and land-use governance challenges, it’s useful to look to commodity and trade approaches like the EU’s Voluntary Partnership Agreements. There are lessons from the timber sector for creating the basis for zero-deforestation production and related trade. It’s essential to capitalise on initiatives that are effectively bringing visibility, support and competence to forest and land-use governance.

In the years ahead, we’ll continue to support countries to find innovative approaches and solutions to their land-use governance and development goals, and to find opportunities for dialogue and partnership. We look forward to sharing new lessons along this journey.
 

 


Christophe van Orshoven

Team leader

EU REDD Facility

 

Supporting sustainable palm oil: a crucial role for Indonesian districts

By Istu Septania


As consumers globally become more selective about choosing products based on sustainable production processes, suppliers must increasingly provide evidence that their goods are made without damaging the environment or ignoring the rights of local people.

Demand for sustainable palm oil is driven by concerns associated with social and environmental impacts of palm oil production. Consuming countries have frequently been held responsible for driving these impacts and for importing deforestation through commodity supply chains. In response, efforts are being made to reduce oil palm related deforestation, resolve land conflicts, improve smallholders’ livelihoods and agricultural practices, and revamp the sector’s image. Multinational companies sourcing palm oil and palm oil products have improved supply chain accountability and transparency. Indonesia as the world’s leading palm oil producer is also making efforts to address concerns and meet expectations.

An EU-supported webinar hosted by The Jakarta Post on 30 March 2021 explored how The Terpercaya Initiative can support Indonesian sustainable palm oil production and trade. The Initiative, established in 2018 through a multi-stakeholder Advisory Committee, has developed a district sustainability monitoring system that will provide credible information to buyers assessing where to source products in Indonesia. It is part of the Indonesian Government’s efforts to promote sustainability in commodity supply chains and improve the welfare of communities, especially smallholders, by providing accurate information to markets. 

The virtual event confirmed that districts in Indonesia can provide a crucial role in achieving sustainable palm oil; one which must be communicated with buyers and consuming countries as their concerns for sustainability have increased significantly. 

The webinar featured a panel of experts: Jarot Indarto (Policy Analyst at the Ministry of National Development Planning (PPN)/Bappenas); Henriette Faergemann (First Counsellor European Union Delegation to Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam); Asep Asmara, (Director of Export of Agricultural and Forestry Products, Directorate General of Foreign Trade, the Ministry of Trade); Jeremy Broadhead (KAMI Project Manager, European Forest Institute); Nur Maliki Arifiandi, (Policy Engagement Manager, Forests at the Carbon Disclosure Project); and Josi Khatarina (Senior Advisor at Yayasan Inobu).

Indonesia has enjoyed enormous benefits from the high-yielding oil palm and the industry has substantially contributed to socioeconomic development in the country. The palm oil industry has absorbed around 5.3 million workers directly and is an income source for more than 21 million people, including farmers and their families. According to the Trade Ministry, Indonesia supplies 56% of the world’s crude palm oil and in 2020, the export value of the commodity reached US$ 21 billion (Rp 307 trillion), contributing 13.5% of the total value of non-oil and gas exports. 

During the webinar, Jarot Indarto highlighted that the Indonesian government has set its policy direction on sustainable food and agriculture in its 2020-2024 National Medium-Term Development Plan, particularly on integrating supply chains to ensure sustainability and improve the agricultural-based processing industry.

The Terpercaya Initiative aims to provide credible and accurate information about district sustainability performance in producing palm oil and has been developed to support similar outcomes. The initiative has been led by Bappenas with financial support from the European Union, and implemented by Yayasan Inobu and the European Forest Institute. 

The initiative seeks to bring lasting impact at scale by tracking and creating incentives for sustainability performance of districts across the country. The initiative is also expected to support district governments in transitioning to sustainability and its development has been informed by experience in four pilot districts: Seruyan and West Kotawaringin in Central Kalimantan, Rokan Hulu in Riau, and North Morowali in Central Sulawesi.

Terpercaya indicators share sustainability principles and criteria with existing commodity certification schemes, such as the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil and the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, and align with the Indonesian legal framework. The indicators also align with and support local governments in progressing towards the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement on climate change.

During the webinar, Jeremy Broadhead, Manager of the EU funded KAMI Project which is implemented by the European Forest Institute (EFI), explained the development of the Terpercaya Initiative. He said a data platform for collating and disseminating information has been established and is now hosted by Bappenas. In addition, supply chain traceability to connect consumers and buyers to information on district progress towards sustainability has been undertaken. He hopes that these efforts can help reinforce supply chains for sustainable palm oil.

The Terpercaya Initiative has developed a set of 22 sustainability indicators to evaluate district level economic, environmental, social, and governance performance.

Details of the 22 indicators are as follows: 

A. Environmental Pillar

  • Permanent forest protection
  • Forest and critical areas protection
  • Fire prevention
  • Peatland protection
  • Climate change mitigation
  • Production forest managed sustainably
  • Water and air pollution control

B. Social Pillar

  • Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC)
  • Customary rights recognition
  • Conflict resolution
  • Smallholders share
  • Smallholder registration

C. Economic Pillar

  • Smallholder productivity
  • Smallholder organizations
  • Smallholder supports
  • Responsible industry (including ISPO)
  • Poverty rate

D. Governance Pillar

  • Public information access
  • Multi-stakeholder participation in district planning
  • Complaint mechanism
  • Sustainable land-use planning
  • Proportion of budget for sustainability

The Terpercaya Initiative adopts the jurisdictional approach, which has several advantages in overcoming the challenges of sustainable agriculture. Compared to the conventional approach where the focus is on individual plantations and supply chains, the jurisdictional approach is more cost effective and covers all forests and producers, including smallholders for whom certification is often either too expensive or unattainable due to land tenure issues. The approach should help district governments to achieve sustainable agricultural production, support smallholders and thus bring holistic impacts.

Among the main goals of the initiative is sharing objective information on district sustainability performance with stakeholders and supply chain actors and providing information on palm oil governance and trade.

Meanwhile, the Terpercaya data platform is expected to be a key tool to inform discussions on the sustainability of palm oil production in the context of Indonesia’s national and international commitments and Indonesia’s trade including with the EU. It is hoped that it will help smallholders to access supply chains for sustainable palm oil and accelerate district level transitions to sustainability.

During the webinar, Josi Khatarina of the Terpercaya Initiative’s secretariat and Senior Advisor at Inobu, explained that the jurisdictional approach is an inclusive one. The Terpercaya Initiative aims to be implemented at the national level, with four districts for detailed piloting. The initiative is set to collaborate with other regions as well in its effort to achieve sustainable palm oil production on a national scale.

Henriette Faergemann, First Counsellor European Union Delegation to Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam, explained that the Terpercaya Initiative builds on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Indonesian legal frameworks. It also serves as complementing to the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil standard by covering entire jurisdictions and all producers and forests so that nothing is left aside and no one is left behind.

To explore these issues further, see the webinar recording and watch the video on Terpercaya

 

Istu Septania

Public Communications Coordinator

Inobu

 

This blog post was originally published by Inobu on 20 May 2021. Read the original English blog post and the Bahasa Indonesia blog post

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