Indonesia has 24.2 million hectares of peat land which is divided into 865 KHG. The Ministry of Environment and Forestry hopes that a center of excellence in landscape-based peat management can be developed by involving all stakeholders including the private sector, universities and the community.
Budisusanti said that several centers of excellence in peat management already have a strong specific basis with the existence of a Peat Ecosystem Protection and Management Plan.
Deputy Director of Corporate Strategy & Relations at APP Sinar Mas, Iwan Setiawan, said that experts must be involved in developing a strategic approach for a Center of Excellence for peat protection and management.
He explained that in terms of utilization and economic goals, the importance of implementing peatland conservation and restoration should not be ignored. “The private sector must continue to pursue credible data science-based solutions,” he said.
Iwan explained APP Sinar Mas uses remote sensing in peat management for topographical mapping using Lidar technology. The area mapped is around 4.5 million hectares which includes concession areas as well as their surroundings.
Lidar technology contributes to water management, peatland rezoning, and it has confirmed that more than 35,000 hectares of production areas can be retired for restoration. Iwan said that the company is working with experts and specialists in developing production tree species that are suitable for the high peat water table.
Another effort being made is involving the community to prevent fires on peatlands by developing the Desa Makmur Peduli Api (DMPA) program.