Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Indonesia as a leader

Erik Solheim in the Jakarta Post: …the inconvenient truth is that commitment and action from developed countries alone would not solve the climate change challenge, even if all developed countries stopped all emissions today. Developing countries must act as well. Unless we all take large scale remedial action, huge damage worldwide will follow, wreaking havoc with much of the development progress of the last decades.

…Fortunately, even in the most difficult times, there are always alternatives. Tropical forest countries, like Indonesia, are endowed with rich natural resources that sustain essential life support systems both for the region and for the world.

Lasting economic growth can be built on sustainable land use and world class agricultural productivity. Effective and transparent land use planning and improved governance and transparency can be established at all levels of government. What the world needs is good examples of how this could be done: Indonesia is in the process of becoming such an example.
Private enterprise, moreover, benefit from the ecosystem services that standing forests and peatlands provide, and will suffer from the consequences of climate change, such as lack of water and unreliable rainfall patterns.

…Low emission development is a fundamental choice for a country that cannot be imposed from the outside. Norway has pledged to support Indonesia with US$ 1 billion over the next few years. However, the agreement between Indonesia and Norway only captures in writing what Indonesia under President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s leadership had already planned to do….

A brook in an Indonesia forest in 1929, from the Tropenmuseum Collection via Wikimedia Commons

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