The challenge in ensuring sustainable water availability to support people's welfare and economy and nature conservation in Indonesia is growing more urgent than ever. To actualize the water stewardship efforts and sustainable water resources management, Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) and Alliance for Water Stewardship Indonesia (AWS Indonesia) initiated the Indonesia Water Coalition. This multi-party partnership platform for water stewardship and sustainable water resources management through collective action at the watershed level was officially launched on Friday, January 29th, 2021, in Jakarta.
The virtual inauguration was conducted by agreement signing with partners, consisting of Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN), Yayasan Aliansi Wali Sumber Daya Air Indonesia, PT Coca-Cola Indonesia, Global Water Partnership Southeast Asia, PT L’Oréal Indonesia, PT Multi Bintang Indonesia, PT Nestlé Indonesia, PT Tirta Investama (Danone Indonesia), and PT Unilever Indonesia, Tbk.
The Indonesia Water Coalition encourages collective action aligned with the local water management, including the implementation of Alliance for Water Stewardship’s International Standard and the implementation of best practice that supports sustainable water resources management.
“Recent challenges related to water are not problems for only one stakeholder. We all suffered from less water availability, floods, pollution, and climate change. During the COVID-19 pandemic, access to clean water has become the first line of defense. As a promotor of Alliance for Water Stewardship’s International Standard, we are aware that to solve challenges related to water and build a stronger and more sustainable economy, we need to work together to protect the economy, people, and our environment,” explained Basja Jantowski, Director Alliance for Water Stewardship Indonesia.
“That is why we need to involve and work together with all stakeholders to solve water issues in Indonesia sustainably and create a holistic and comprehensive solution with considerations to the ecosystem to support people’s social and economic needs. Cooperation with the regency and provincial government and the community needs to be done to protect and sustainably manage water resources in Indonesia,” added Ratih Loekito, Director of Development and Marketing at Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara.
This collaborative effort received a warm welcome from corporate partners that now have joined Indonesia Water Coalition. “We understand the complexity of clean water availability issue, and because of that, collaboration becomes essential effort to achieve the sustainability goal,” stated Ika Noviera, Corporate Affairs Director PT Multi Bintang Indonesia.
This statement was also agreed by Debora Tjandrakusuma, Director Corporate Affairs PT Nestlé Indonesia, “At Nestlé, we have a long-term commitment to implementing responsible water management to ensure water sustainability for the next generation. We are working with stakeholders to conduct various efforts to increase water usage efficiency and protect water resources. With this water coalition, we hope we can work together to support the materialization of sustainable water resources in Indonesia.”
The awareness to protect water availability sustainably has been a part of the corporate partners’ operational strategy. This has also become a commitment from Danone Indonesia, in which its operational process attempts to maintain the water cycle by not taking water more than what nature can restore. “By collaborating with partners, we are committed to give a positive impact to water and protect the natural balance,” asserted Karyanto Wibowo, Director Sustainable Development Danone Indonesia.
Same sentiment was also emphasized by Nurdiana Darus, Head of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability PT Unilever Indonesia, Tbk. “Unilever Indonesia is very happy to be able to join in this coalition. The issue of clean water in Indonesia is a major problem. Interest and collaboration across sectors are essential keys to solve it. The pledge that we did today is very aligned with the ‘Unilever 2030 Water Commitment’ that we released globally in 2020. There are three focuses in that commitment, which are designing biodegradable products, implementing the water stewardship program, and building water management security,” she stated.
At present, YKAN and AWS Indonesia are conducting a preliminary study at three watersheds in West Java to analyze the risk and potential of several chosen watersheds. Indonesia Water Coalition would also work together with the government and related agencies to develop sustainable water resources management that aligns with stakeholders' shared goals.
With an open and non-binding membership system, private sectors, non-governmental organizations (NGO), mass organizations, higher education institutions, research institutions, and other organizations can join in Indonesia Water Coalition as long as they have the same vision and mission in this issue. Action to create harmony between nature and humans; water for today, water for tomorrow.
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.