On November 10, 2020, Jakarta Natural Resources Conservation Agency (Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam or BKSDA), Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara, and all of Mangrove Ecosystem Restoration Alliance (MERA) partners, consisting of APP Sinar Mas, PT Indofood Sukses Makmur, Tbk, PT Chevron Pacific Indonesia, and PT Djarum, conducted the first inauguration ceremony of the first construction stage of the facilities and infrastructures of Muara Angke Wildlife Reserves, Jakarta. This first stage covered the construction of the gates and 237.9 meters footbridge, officially inaugurated by Wiratno, Director General of Natural Resources and Ecosystem Conservation of Ministry of Environment and Forestry (Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam dan Ekosistem (KSDAE) Kementerian Lingkungan Hidup dan Kehutanan (KLHK)).
The construction of these facilities and infrastructures are a part of the stages in strengthening SMMA function as the center of environmental education and mangrove ecosystem restoration in Jakarta. “Muara Angke Wildlife Reserves (Suaka Margasatwa Muara Angke) is a conservation area on the north coast of Jakarta with an area of 25.02 hectares and holds an important ecological role. Aside from having a critical role in ensuring the lives of flora and fauna, Muara Angke Wildlife Reserves also holds other ecological roles, such as providing an environmental service to the residents of Jakarta and the surrounding areas by giving out O2, absorbing CO2, managing hydrology, presenting landscape beauty, and accomodating biodiversity,” explained Karyadi, Head of Jakarta Natural Resources Conservation Agency.
Based on a study by Jakarta BKSDA and YKAN in 2019, the mangrove forests in Jakarta Bay were under high pressures from land conversion, especially for residency areas, and high pollution levels. An ecosystem-based solution through a mangrove restoration in the context of climate change is needed to address those issues and produce three beneficial results: reducing disaster risk effectively from the financial aspect, supporting biodiversity conservation, and increasing economy and human welfare.
“In saving mangrove ecosystems in Jakarta, collective action is necessary. Hence, MERA is the answer to integrated and collaborative management that unites all parties in the efforts to decrease coastal community vulnerability, protect natural resources and assets, and mitigate and adapt to climate change based on science,” explained Herlina Hartanto, Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara Executive Director.
The mangrove ecosystem conservation is also the concern of private sectors in the MERA alliance. "Our supports to this collective MERA program are a form of our contributions to the environment conservation. We hope that the existence of Muara Angke Wildlife Reserves will have positive impacts to the environment, social and community's economy and inspire many parties to be involved and support this program," said Stefanus Indrayana, Head of Corporate Communications Division PT Indofood Sukses Makmur, Tbk, representing MERA partners in this event.
Mangrove ecosystem conservation in Jakarta requires an integrated management strategy. With regards to that necessity, the Directorate General of Natural Resources and Ecosystem Conservation of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, through Jakarta BKSDA, cooperated with YKAN in committing to restore the mangrove ecosystem and conducting an integrated management program through the MERA program. Launched in 2018, MERA is an alliance that prioritized ecosystem-based adaptation strategy, including mangrove conservation and restoration, which are the priority actions to increase the welfare of coastal communities and conserve biodiversity. All related stakeholders are hoped to support its sustainability actively.
“The success of these constructions is a result of excellent cooperation between Jakarta Natural Resources Conservation Agency (Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam or BKSDA), Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara, and all partners who have supported the MERA program in Muara Angke Wildlife Reserves. I also hope that the success of this first stage of construction could inspire other partners to support the MERA program in this area,” said Wiratno, Director General of Natural Resources and Ecosystem Conservation of Ministry of Environment and Forestry (Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam dan Ekosistem (KSDAE) Kementerian Lingkungan Hidup dan Kehutanan (KLHK)).
Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) is a scientific-based non-profit organization that has been present in Indonesia since 2014. With the mission of protecting lands and waters as life support systems, we provide innovative solutions to realize the harmony of nature and humans through effective natural resource management, prioritizing a non-confrontational approach, and building a network of partnerships with all stakeholders for a sustainable Indonesia. For more information, visit ykan.or.id.