Indonesia - 17 November, 2022
High Conservation Value Area (HCVA) principles and approach have widely socialized since 2010 through capacity building, embedment in certification standards, and recently through policy instruments. However, according to Hairil Anwar, Natural Resource and Ecosystem Protection Division Head of the Provincial Environment and Forestry Agency, “It is recorded that approximately only 10% of oil palm companies in West Kalimantan that regularly submitted their HCV area management reports to the Environment and Forestry Agency of West Kalimantan province.”. This phenomenon seems to be caused by several factors such as the lack of capacity of Environment and Forestry Agencies to monitor and assert the policy, low initiative of oil palm management units to submit HCV reports to district and province level governments, and the absence of data sharing from national (ISPO & RSPO) down to province and district level governments to initiate HCVA monitoring at site level.
Having been actively developing the HCVA guidance, promoting and mainstreaming HCVA during the last two decades, Tropenbos Indonesia worked together with GIZ SASCI+ to facilitate the West Kalimantan Plantation Agency in organizing an HCVA Identification and monitoring training in Pontianak on 8 and 9 November 2022. The training was attended by 33 Agricultural and Plantation Agency representatives of most districts in West Kalimantan Province.
Through this training, GIZ SASCI+ and Tropenbos Indonesia aim to support the mainstreaming of HCVA identification, monitoring and evaluation done through the capacity building and strengthened roles of Plantation Agencies at district level. This training aims to synchronize between Plantation Agencies with the already assigned of Environment and Forestry Agencies (DLHK).
As such, this effort could strengthen the implementation of West Kalimantan Province Regulation No. 6/2018 on Sustainable Land-based Business Management, in which each land-based business permit should at least allocate 7% of their permit as conservation areas or HCVA. Conservation area (HCVA) outside state forest areas (APL) can be registered as Forestry and Other Land Use (FoLU) Carbon Net Sink 2030 and able to contribute to Indonesia's climate change actions (Nationally Determined Contribution – NDC 2030).
By introducing HCVA identification and monitoring methods to the Plantation Agency, the formulation and addition of HCVA monitoring procedures in the Plantation Business Assessment (PUP) policy is expected to be done. The training also addressed the need to compile and establish a collective West Kalimantan HCVA map. The need of HCVA monitoring and evaluation legal framework which involved the roles of Plantation Agencies at national, provincial, and district levels was also addressed.
“The huge losses that flood, forest and land fire disasters brought to West Kalimantan Province due to the impacts of climate change should have made oil palm companies realized the importance to solidify HCVA at the proper proportion areas in their concessions.” said Ir. Muhammad Munsif, M.M., Head of West Kalimantan Plantation and Animal Husbandry Agency, highlighting the urgency of HCVAs from a disaster prevention standpoint.
The allocation of HCVA is also part of the commitment of oil palm companies to implement a sustainable management in their plantations as mandated in the Ministry of Agriculture regulation No.19/2011 about ISPO. The regulation is supported with West Kalimantan Governor Regulation No.3/2022 about West Kalimantan Province Action Plan on Sustainable Oil Palm (RAD-KSB).
Participants are expected to be able to help implement proper HCVA identification, allocation, and monitoring towards an improved oil palm plantation sustainable development to balance between economic and conservation objectives in West Kalimantan Province.
To support the new task of West Kalimantan plantation agencies, in 2023, West Kalimantan Plantation and Animal Husbandry Agency in collaboration with Tropenbos Indonesia will initiate regulation to establish new roles and responsibilities of Province and District Plantation Agencies on monitoring and evaluation of HCVA on oil-palm management units.