Indonesia is blessed with the third largest tracts of rainforests in the world, home to incredible biodiversity, including 12 percent of all mammal species and 17 percent of all bird species in the world. The richness of these forests also feed an estimated 60 million people in Indonesia that depend at least part of their livelihoods in these resources.
These forests are fast disappearing, rapidly transformed into oil palm estates, pulp and paper plantations, mines, and other uses. To keep these valuable forests, the Government of Indonesia has set aside some 28 million hectares of protected areas, including more than 40 National Parks. Yet, these areas, as others, are under threat from encroachment and the enticement of non-sustainable practices.
Indonesia is faced with the dual challenge of conservation and development and has set the goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, most of which are produced by deforestation and land use change, by 26 percent by 2020 while maintaining a 7 percent annual growth. Creative and innovative ways need to be developed and mainstreamed to generate economic growth through conservation.
Green Indonesia is a multi-stakeholder collaboration initiative aimed at proving that sustainable natural resource management can indeed contribute to economic growth in a meaningful way. We focus on supporting social entrepreneurs who are managing and developing viable businesses in the area of nature-based tourism and creative industries made from timber and non-timber forest resources. These enterprises help create decent livelihoods for communities by working with their cultural knowledge concerning resource use and design, and adapting these to the contemporary taste of the market, thus creating social and economic wealth for society and development.