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Indonesia Climate Policy Outlook 2024



On 15 March 2024, FPCI Climate Unit convened a public discussion titled "Indonesian Climate Policy Outlook 2024" at the Auditorium Prof. Dr. Hasjim Djalal, FPCI Secretariat. Through this discussion, we delved deeper into Indonesia's climate actions for the last ten years under President Joko Widodo's administration and climate policy projection in 2024, the transition year. Driven by the increasingly dire impacts of the climate crisis, Indonesia needs more concrete and ambitious policies and strategies.


This public discussion explores Indonesia's policy direction in facing the challenges of climate change amid a political transition. It discusses various sectors such as energy, forestry and land use, climate finance, industry, and other climate-related issues.


Panelists
  1. Dr. Indra Gustari – Chair of the Climate Index Prediction Working Group, Climate Change Information Center, Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG)

  2. Nadia Hadad – Executive Director of the Yayasan Madani Berkelanjutan

  3. Andhyta F. Utami – CEO of Think Policy

  4. Gita Syahrani – Chair of the Management Board of the Earth-Centered Economy Coalition (KEM)

  5. Dr. Marlistya Citraningrum – Sustainable Energy Access Program Manager, Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR)


Moderator

Aisya Noorhadiva Tirtosudiro, Research and Program Officer of FPCI Climate Unit


 

Dr. Indra Gustari at Indonesia Climate Policy Outlook 2024

Dr. Indra Gustari, Chair of the Climate Index Prediction Working Group, Climate Change Information Center, Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG), highlighted the impact of climate change, which has become a global issue.


According to him, data observed and recorded by the Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG) shows a significant trend of increasing temperature–with the highest recorded temperature in July 2023 and the highest average temperature in Indonesia since 1981 recorded in February 2024. The impact of this increase in temperature is very diverse, ranging from health to the agricultural sector, as well as the rise in extreme weather events that occur in various regions–such as what happened in March 2024 in several areas in Indonesia.


On the impacts of temperature increase observed in Indonesia

"The increase in temperature impacts increasing sea surface temperatures. It continuously influences the health sector, such as the increasing distribution of disease. Food distribution and agricultural activities are our concerns in the agricultural sector, and of course, so is the disaster sector. We see that extreme weather and climate events are increasing in frequency. Previously, we usually saw increasing rainfall from the end of the year through the beginning of the following year–December, January, and February–the peak of the Asian Monsoon season. However, this year, we observed increasing rainfall starting in March, based on data from West Sumatra, Central Java, parts of East Java, and Madura area."


 

Nadia Hadad at Indonesia Climate Policy Outlook 2024

Nadia Hadad, Executive Director of the Yayasan Madani Berkelanjutan, discussed the critical role of Indonesia's forests in the global context and the need for efforts to reduce deforestation. She also highlighted the downward trend in deforestation in recent years, although there are still cases of deforestation that need to be prevented.


In the context of global climate commitments, Nadia emphasized that Indonesia must comply with the targets set, as stated in the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) document, including the need to protect forests and avoid further deforestation–bearing in mind that Indonesia has no more space to clear forests. She pointed out that the challenges in protecting forests include overlapping policies and conflicts with policies of other sectors. She noted that 9.8 million hectares of forest have not been effectively protected.


On the need for policies that prioritize local communities

"Local communities living around forests must be the main beneficiaries of forest protection policies. It is necessary to consider how communities can share the benefits fairly from forest development and protection. They are not only stakeholders but also the right holders who have been guarding the forest for years. That's one thing that's important to pay attention to."


 

Andhyta F. Utami at Indonesia Climate Policy Outlooko 2024

Andhyta F. Utami, CEO of Think Policy, spoke about the need for more interest in climate action and the challenges in mobilizing interest to shape appropriate policies. She reviewed the low level of public attention to climate change and the obstacles faced in translating this interest into real action. With her experience and insight, Andhyta helped us understand the complexity of the challenges faced in responding to this critical issue.


On the lack of demand for climate action

"Ultimately, what the majority of Indonesian people care about is not climate action. The societal demand for climate action is still low, which causes the government to tend not to be serious about taking climate action steps. There is an under-supply of climate action driven by under-demand for climate action in the first place."


On the challenges in creating demand

"There is a dissonance or inconsistency between what [the government] say they want to do or where they say their commitment is, and it turns out that the practical policies in the field are the opposite of the climate targets. There is indeed an education gap that needs to be addressed for people who understand the demand for the right policy, too."


 

Gita Syahrani at Indonesia Climate Policy Outlook 2024

Gita Syahrani, Chair of the Management Board of the Earth-Centered Economy Coalition (KEM), pointed out the problem of the need for action in dealing with climate change, focusing on the supply side. She highlighted the importance of understanding political economic dynamics from the supply side, encouraging cooperation between business actors to create positive social impacts, and highlighting the gap between awareness of the climate crisis and the political steps taken.


Gita also emphasized the importance of considering biodiversity in economic development, avoiding unsustainable exploitation of natural resources, and focusing on market and regional economic potential. She encourages all stakeholders to adopt a sustainable economic pattern by optimally utilizing Indonesia's natural wealth.


On the awareness of the climate crisis

"There has been an increase in data showing that Indonesians are now more aware of the climate crisis. According to a survey by Yale and several organizations in 2021, Indonesians believe we can work together to solve and adapt to risks that can no longer be avoided."


On challenges and solutions related to the climate crisis

"Bioeconomic terminology has been included in the Long-Term National Development Plan (National RPJP), translated as an economic system that considers the carrying capacity, supportive and assimilative capacity, and resilience of the environment. It shows that biodiversity will be valuable for the economic system if appropriately maintained. Due to its potential, we no longer deal with extractive economic sectors that open lands and only sell their commodities; instead, we are implementing downstream. 


Although it is correct terminology-wise, downstream has been, unfortunately, framed by the perspective conveyed during the presidential election debate with an impression that downstream is extractive, focuses on minerals, and is managed with exploitative mechanisms–in the sense that it doesn't take into account the carrying capacity, supportive and assimilative capacity, and resilience aspects. For example, almost 2 million hectares of forest have been cut down for nickel mining when the nickel price has fallen, and it turns out the battery technology doesn't need nickel anyway."


 

Dr. Marlistya Citraningrum at Indonesia Climate Policy Outlook 2024

Dr. Marlistya Citraningrum, Sustainable Energy Access Program Manager of the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR), discussed the urgency of the energy transition towards cleaner and more sustainable sources. She highlighted the importance of realizing that energy is our primary need, which includes electricity and internet access. Dr. Citraningrum emphasized the need for concrete action to reduce emissions without sacrificing improving people's quality of life. She also underlined the role of individuals in producing clean energy while highlighting the challenges in making it happen and emphasizing the urgency of more ambitious action in overcoming the climate crisis without relying solely on leaders.

On energy transition

"The energy transition answers the question of how to move from our current fossil energy system to an energy system that relies more on sustainable energy sources. The current energy transition usually has 4D pillars: Decentralization, digitalization, decarbonization, and democratization. The system is available in many places because renewable and sustainable energy sources that can be used for decarbonization are available everywhere. It can be used by various groups at various scales. We are talking about renewable energy plants that can be built as small as the size of a house or individual. So we can become producers instead of just consumers."


On the importance of action without relying on leaders

"The realistic paradigm is an excuse for us not achieving targets, not doing something more ambitious. In fact, we have run out of time to solve this climate problem. Whoever the president or leader of the country is, environmental and global temperature increase limits will not follow the leader. We still have a limit–the temperature increase cannot exceed 1.5º Celsius. Therefore, the effort should not be dependent on whoever the leader is. It must continue striving so that Indonesia won't face 2045 anxiously."




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