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Integrating Global Forest Policies into National Policies1

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					                 Integrating Global Forest Policies into National Policies1
                                    by Dr. Yetti Rusli2 and Dr. Agus Justianto3


                                                     SUMMARY
               Forests were among the most controversial issues considered during preparations
               for the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in
               1992. Post Earth Summit, global community concern on forestry issue was growing.
               The establishment of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) in October 2000
               under UN-ECOSOC Resolution E/2000/35 aims to enhance support to
               implementation of the results of international deliberations at the national level, most
               prominently the implementation of the IPF/IFF proposals.
               The present important progress was non-legally binding for a Global Consensus on
               the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of All Types of
               Forests. This process is conducted through UNFF, which have formulated global
               objectives on forests. These four objectives consist of commitment to work globally,
               regionally and nationally to achieve progress towards their achievement by 2015.
               There is a fundamental shift of priority-setting in forestry-related programs at all
               levels; what was previously considered as appropriate and high priority has now less
               importance and vice versa. Nonetheless, there are quite a few components of UNFF
               Work of Program that remain relevant and urgent. For them, concrete actions have
               been and are being undertaken, i.e. through formulation of Strategic Plans, Annual
               Development Plans, etc. Those actions merit reporting to present an insight on what
               Indonesia has been doing, hence an indication of Indonesian’s commitment to the
               implementations of the global objectives on forests.
               In assessing the relevance and priority of global objectives on forests, it is apt to
               point out one of the most important developments in the new setting of Indonesia’s
               forestry sector, the five priority programs, namely combating illegal logging,
               restructuring the forestry sector, rehabilitation and conservation of forest resources
               (including promoting forest plantation), empowering forest dependent community,
               and securing forest areas. These five programs have been determined as
               mainstream of forestry-sector related policies to support and back the conservation
               and rehabilitation objectives within the coming 10 – 20 years.
               The economic and political change in Indonesia after 1998 has changed priority
               setting in national forestry program. There is a growing perception among the
               politicians, government officials and researchers, NGOs and the broader civil
               society, that the forestry sector must shift its paradigm from the presently centralized
               bureaucracy and large-scale commercial forest operations, to a more manageable
               decentralized system of decision-making and management, focusing on greater
               participation, access and, to some extend, ownership of the resources by forest
               dwelling and adjacent communities. Existing related programs has been conducted,
               such as Community Forestry (HKm), Community-Based Forest Management
               (PHBM), Social Forestry, Community Commercial Plantation (HTR).
               Increasing national and worldwide demand for timber and other wood products is a
               major threat to sustainable forest use. Most indebted forest concessionaires are


1 Paper presented in the Workshop at the Indonesian Ministry of Forestry Exhibition Program
2 Director General, Forestry Planning Agency, Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia
3 Deputy Director, Forestry Plan Evaluation, Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia




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              judged to have good recovery prospects because it is claimed that they have
              commercial timber remaining and valid licenses. Therefore, these firms have to
              practice Sustainable Forest Management. Timber on the domestic market is
              undervalued substantially. To ensure that royalty and revenue payments reflect the
              maximum that can be collected for the benefit of the Indonesian people, timber
              values have been recalculated. The government has halted timber harvesting in and
              adjacent to conservation areas. Furthermore, the government has renewed efforts to
              close all illegal sawmills and formulated ideas to restructure the wood-processing
              industry to balance demand with a sustainable supply.
              For decade the global warming issue plays an important role in global community,
              while the sustainable forest management issue has become the main forestry issue
              in national and regional basis. Recognizing the linkage between sustainable forest
              management with efforts to address climate change, national forest policies to be
              taken in Indonesia are (i) to enhance effort for reducing deforestation and other
              forms of forest degradation as well as rehabilitating degraded forests; (iii) to protect,
              extend and restore protected areas for conserving biodiversity; (iv) to extend forest
              plantations for the substitute of natural forests as the main sources of wood and to
              sustainably manage the remaining natural production forests; (v) to enhance the role
              of people in forest management, hence augmenting the role of forestry in poverty
              eradication; (vi) to practice good forest governance and eliminate illegal practices on
              forest resources; (vii) to establish Forest Management Unit in some provinces; (viii)
              to continue promoting the negotiation on voluntary partnership agreements with
              timber consuming and producing countries.



Intoduction
Forests support our life system. They are the world's oxygen factories. Moreover, forests play a role in
climate change as the wood they produce, trap and store carbon dioxide. Equally important, forests are a
source of livelihood for millions of people around the world not to mention a source of food and shelter for
the people who live in and by them. For many countries, especially developing countries, including
Indonesia, forests signify one of the most important resources for development and poverty eradication. This
is why we need to constantly remind ourselves that the world’s forests are vital to the wellbeing of the
human race and to the wellbeing of the planet.
The forest issue is complex, politically sensitive, and cross-sectoral and has sub-national, national,
transboundary, regional and global dimensions. Furthermore, forests were among the most controversial
issues considered during preparations for the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development (UNCED) in 1992. An outstanding demonstration of the cross-sectoral nature of the forest
issues is exemplified by the fact that reference to forests is made 285 times in nearly half of the 40
Chapters4 in Agenda 21 adopted at the UNCED. Constituencies associated with issues other than forests,
without any lobby from the forests constituency, made this extensive reference to forests. While forests
provide a wide range of economic, environmental, social, and cultural benefits, many stresses on forests
are associated, directly or indirectly, with human activities in other areas such as agriculture, energy,
mining, transport and transformation of habitat for expanding population and urbanization.



4
 Agenda 21 Chapters (abbreviated titles) referring to forests include: Ch. .5: Demographic Dynamics; Ch. 7: Human
Settlements; Ch. 8: Integrated Decision Making; Ch. 9: Atmosphere; Ch. 10: Land Resources; Ch. 11: Combating
Deforestation; Ch. 12: Combating Desertification; Ch. 13: Mountain Development; Ch. 14: Agriculture and Rural
Development; Ch. 15: Biodiversity; Ch.. 16: Biotechnology; Ch.. 17; Oceans; Ch. 18: Water; Ch. 24: Women and
Equitable Development; Ch. 26. Indigenous People and their Communities; Ch. 32: Farmers; and Ch. 40. Information for
decision Makers.


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Global Forest Policies
Emergence of forests on the international policy and political agendas in the mid-80s is largely attributed to
the alarm raised by the environmental community about (i) the unprecedented rates of deforestation and
forest degradation; (ii) environmentally unsustainable forestry practices in many parts of the world; and (iii)
the consequent loss of the multiple values and benefits provided by forests for human well-being.
Intergovernmental deliberations on forests, held at the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992 and subsequently under
the auspices of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF), Intergovernmental Forum on Forest (IFF),
and United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF), from 1995 to 2015, have made a notable contribution
towards building consensus on a large number of elements of forest policy. Post Earth Summit, global
community concern on forestry issue was growing. The establishment of the United Nations Forum on
Forests in October 2000 aims to enhance support to implementation of the results of international
deliberations at the national level, most prominently the implementation of the IPF/IFF proposals.
The IPF/IFF/UNFF process has built consensus on many aspects of sustainable forest management (SFM)
including, for example approaches to formulate national forest programs (nfps) through a transparent,
inclusive and participatory process; criteria and indicators (C&I) that characterize SFM in context of diverse
regional, economic, environmental, social and political regimes; understanding the underlying causes of
deforestation; the use of traditional forest related knowledge; conservation and rehabilitation of forests in
countries with low forest cover; and fostering international cooperation. It is now widely recognized that a
shift from sustained yield forestry, aimed to produce a specific product, to SFM requires viewing forests as
ecosystems that provide multiple values and benefits.
The IPF/IFF/UNFF process, serviced by a compact Secretariat, was initially supported by the Interagency
Task Force on Forests (ITFF) and subsequently by the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF). The
Ministers responsible for forest policy and forest management have participated in selective sessions of the
IPF/IFF/UNFF, provided policy guidance, and have received reports on progress made in clarifying the
scale and scope of many forest and forest-related issues and on the implementation of IPF/IFF Proposals
for Action (PfA). While very significant progress has been made in forest policy development, the
implementation of the IPF/IFF PfA has lagged behind considerably, particularly in developing countries.
The country- and organization-led initiatives, organized in support of IPF, IFF and UNFF, have made a
major contribution to the intergovernmental forest policy deliberations.
A decade after the initiation of the IPF/IFF/UNFF process, the international community is faced with the
challenging task of deciding the future of an International Arrangement on Forests (IAF). There is a need to
define the future strategic objectives for the forests of the world and the institutional arrangements to
accomplish these objectives. The IPF/IFF/UNFF process has made significant progress in the development
and coordination of forest policy. However, the progress has been uneven in policy implementation and in
mobilization of resources to support implementation in developing countries and in countries with economies
in transition.
The important progress was non-legally binding for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation
and Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests. This process is conducted through UNFF, which have
formulated global objectives on forests. These four objectives consist of commitment to work globally,
regionally and nationally to achieve progress towards their achievement by 2015.


Current Status of National Forest Policies
Indonesia is currently facing an ongoing process of fundamental change and democratic reform, including
developing it’s a stronger governmental relationship with civil society. This transitional phase, together with
the economic and social impact of the 1997-98 economic crisis, has created a fragile and volatile situation.
The reform movement has encouraged improvements in political life. As an example, the efforts to maintain
national sovereignty and to increase the role of all stakeholders are followed by reducing government


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dominance politically. However, such reforms are a long-term development processes, because it requires
not only legal acts but also changes in the institutional set-up and management of public affairs.
The forestry sector was affected adversely by the economic and social crises of 1997 and 1998. For many
people, the crisis still lingers. Growing concern about the condition of the forest resources has impelled the
government to make a serious effort to tackle the complex problems of forestry development. Part of the
developments can be attributed to the reform movement that demands for improvement in all aspects of
governance. The others are basically the manifestations of the shift of paradigm of forest resources
management and driven by more objective observations upon the present condition of the forestry sector --
which are to some extend also enabled by the reform movement. In general those developments aim at the
following set of objectives: (1) to promote transparent, fair and more inclusive forest resource management,
(2) to reduce the pressure on natural forests, (3) to accelerate rehabilitation and conservation of land and
forest resources, (4) to induce more efficient and competitive wood processing industry and (5) to prop up
resource-based forest management. The ultimate goal is two-sided, namely sustainable forest
management and increased welfare of the people.
At the outset, it is important to note that several unprecedented changes have been taking place in
Indonesia for the last five years. Such changes include major transformations in the country’s
macroeconomic and sector policies, and forestry is among the sectors experiencing a significant policy
redirection. In the new setting, gaining multiple benefits in a sustainable manner is the main driving force of
forest resources management policies replacing the formerly sole economic tendency. People, the largest
segment of forestry stakeholders are now being considered as important actors in sustainable forest
management. Hence achieving people’s prosperity and maintaining the sustainability of forest resources
have already become the two sides of a single coin, that is should mutually reinforce each another.
Basically, recognizing the current diminished conditions of the nation’s forest resources, the forestry sector
is no longer being assumed as primary contributor to national economy growth. It is a national commitment
to give Indonesia’s once leading foreign exchange-earning resources a break. It has already decided that for
the coming years, sustainable forest management is a must and be implemented in order to gain optimal
contribution of forest resources within the new framework of development. At the same time, an effort to
improve the role of non-timber (NTFP) and environmental services has take place.
Some of the most notable developments taking place in the last five years include:
•   Intensification of combating illegal logging and illegal timber trade, including building multilateral and
    bilateral commitments and understandings.
•   The main focus of the next 20-year period as an era of rehabilitation and conservation as a starting
    point to lift up functions of forests, and the initiation of the National Movement of Forest and Land
    Rehabilitation (NM-FLR) in 2003.
•   Enactment of legislations encouraging resource-based forest utilizations.
•   Intensification of effort to reduce the gap between timber supply-demand from the demand side by
    restructuring of the wood processing industry which involves closing down or down-sizing inefficient
    wood processing mills.
•   Endorsement of mandatory certification of forest concession companies along with the issuance of the
    corresponding criteria and indicators of sustainable forest management at the management–unit level.
•   Reassessment of the role of the forestry sector in the national economy; relinquishing for the time being
    the role of forestry sector as one of the prime-movers of the economy. In the future, Industrial Forest
    Plantation will being a focus to replace natural forest as a source of raw materials for forest industry in
    stimulating economic activity.




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•   Adoption and implementation of social forestry concept to increase the role and access of the people to
    forest resource utilization. For commercial purpose, Hutan Tanaman Rakyat (Community Commercial
    Forest) has launched in 2007, as well as existing programs, such as PHBM, HKM etc.


Integrating Global Forest Policies into National Policies
Being a country possessing one of the largest tropical forests on earth, Indonesia has ratified a number of
international conventions related to forestry or environment. Those conventions are United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD),
Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD), Convention on Wetland of International Importance Especially
as Waterfowl Habitat (RAMSAR), and Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Wild
Fauna and Flora (CITES). In addition Indonesia has been involved in several fora such as the IPF and IFF.
Indonesia has actively involved in formulating IPF/IFF recommendations for sustainable forest management
and was among the six countries preparing the Practitioner’s Guide to the Implementation of the IPF
Proposals for Action. With regard to tropical timber trade, Indonesia is a member of the ITTO (International
Tropical Timber organization). In addition, Indonesia is also one of the signatories of the Kyoto Protocol to
the UNFCC.
By referring international forest process, there is a fundamental shift of priority setting in forestry-related
programs in Indonesia at all levels, what was previously considered as appropriate and high priority has now
less importance and vice versa. Consequently, some priorities in the context of the IPF/IFF PfA may need to
be adjusted in accordance with the current situation. For that purpose, concrete actions have been and are
being undertaken, i.e. through improvement of Strategic Plans and Annual Development Plans to be a more
comprehensive manner.
International commitments have become part of forestry policy development. In assessing the relevance
and priority of global objectives on forests, it is apt to point out one of the most important developments in
the new setting of Indonesia’s forestry sector, the five priority programs, namely combating illegal logging,
restructuring the forestry sector, rehabilitation and conservation of forest resources (including promoting
forest plantation), empowering forest dependent community, and securing forest areas. These five
programs have been determined as mainstream of forestry-sector related policies to support sustainable
forest management.
The economic and political change in Indonesia after 1998 has changed priority setting in national forestry
program. There is a growing perception among the politicians, government officials and researchers, NGOs
and the broader civil society, that the forestry sector must shift its paradigm from the presently centralized
bureaucracy and large-scale commercial forest operations, to a more manageable decentralized system of
decision-making and management, focusing on greater participation, access and, to some extend,
ownership of the resources by forest dwelling and adjacent communities.
However, there remain serious constraints that are highlighted was the slow pace in achieving some results,
while improvement efforts have not decreased yet forest degradation. Forestry programs do not reflect the
application of a new forest management paradigm adequately.
The balance between the different forest policy instruments has changed in the new policy. Firstly, there is
general development in Indonesia towards deregulation and reduced state intervention in the economy.
Secondly, the decentralization process in Indonesia has evolved with the greater direct responsibility of local
government including special forest tax. Extension services and the transfer of knowledge and expertise are
becoming more important now that the local government and forest owners have greater responsibility than
in the past. Subsidies are only used as a policy instrument to promote the forest environment.
Increasing demand for timber and other wood products is a major threat to sustainable forest use. Most
indebted forest concessionaires are judged to have good recovery prospects because it is claimed that they
have commercial timber remaining and valid licenses. Therefore, these firms have to practice SFM. Timber

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on the domestic market is undervalued substantially. To ensure that royalty and revenue payments reflect
the maximum that can be collected for the benefit of the Indonesian people, timber values have been
recalculated. The government has halted timber harvesting in and adjacent to conservation areas. New
licenses will not be issued without more prudential assessment and the involvement of local stakeholders to
minimize the impacts of harvesting activities. Furthermore, the government has renewed efforts to close all
illegal sawmills and formulated ideas to restructure the wood-processing industry to balance demand with a
sustainable supply.
Four years ago, a National Campaign for Forest and Land Rehabilitation was launched, involving relevant
stakeholders planting highly critical watersheds in over 2 million hectares. The Indonesian Government is
also very committed to effectively managing its protected areas by developing model national parks, and
sustaining managed production forest having significant values for biodiversity conservation.
However, all of those efforts are virtually meaningless if the major cause of forest degradation in Indonesia
continues to take place, namely illegal logging and the associated illegal timber trade. At the current pace of
illegal logging, natural forests in Indonesia could disappear even as soon as ten years from now if there is
no vigilant actions. To practice good forest governance and eliminate illegal practices on forest resources
through the enactment of the Law on Combating Illegal Logging in 2008 and the establishment of the Forest
Management Unit in all 33 provinces by 2009. In addition, promoting the negotiation on voluntary
partnership agreements with timber consuming and producing countries will be continued.
Being one of the largest rainforest countries in the world, Indonesia stands ready to play an active role in
sustainable forest management. Some actions will be taken are:
1. Continue maintaining and securing forest biodiversity by protecting, extending and restoring protected
   areas. To date, Indonesia has designated the 55 national parks covering approximately 28 million
   hectares and protected forests of 30 million hectares that in total covers approximately 30% our
   territory. We will continue to expand the areas.
2. Continue implementing the National Campaign for Forest and Land Rehabilitation Deforestation with
   the target of replanting 5 million hectares in 2009 and will continue to do so afterwards.
3. Reduce pressure on utilization of natural forests through continue promoting effective forest plantation
   management and sustainably manage the remaining natural production forests. They will include efforts
   to enhance access of local community as well as imposing mandatory certification to forest
   concessionaires.
For decade the global warming issue plays an important role in global community, while the sustainable
forest management issue has become the main forestry issue in national and regional basis. Recognizing
the linkage between sustainable forest management with efforts to address climate change, national forest
policies to be taken in Indonesia are (i) to enhance effort for reducing deforestation and other forms of forest
degradation as well as rehabilitating degraded forests; (iii) to protect, extend and restore protected areas for
conserving biodiversity; (iv) to extend forest plantations for the substitute of natural forests as the main
sources of wood and to sustainably manage the remaining natural production forests; (v) to enhance the
role of people in forest management, hence augmenting the role of forestry in poverty eradication; (vi) to
practice good forest governance and eliminate illegal practices on forest resources; (vii) to establish Forest
Management Unit in some provinces; (viii) to continue promoting the negotiation on voluntary partnership
agreements with timber consuming and producing countries.


Main Challenges and Threats Facing the Forestry Sector
A long list of challenges and threats are currently confronting Indonesia’s forestry sector. The followings are
some of the most urgent and pressing ones:



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•   Combating illegal logging and illegal timber trade. Illegal logging and illegal timber trade have become
    an organized trans-boundary crime threatening Indonesia’s forest resources. If not stopped, any effort
    to attain sustainable forest management will virtually meaningless. Controlling, or ideally eliminating,
    this crime would remain a major challenge for years to come which require a solid regional and
    international cooperation.
•   Lessening the rate of forest degradation and accelerating forest rehabilitation. Forest degradation is
    occurring at a rate of nearly 1.08 million hectares per annum in 2000-2005. Therefore, the Government
    of Indonesia has committed to rehabilitate degraded forest and lands through various activities. Another
    challenge is maintaining the momentum of the National Movement of Forest and Land Rehabilitation
    (NM-FLR) and the continuation of funding given that the reforestation fund currently available is far from
    sufficient.
•   Alleviating the pressure on natural forests and reducing the gap of timber supply and demand. The
    existing large discrepancy between raw material requirement of the wood processing industry and
    sustainable timber supply signifies another major threat facing the forestry sector. From the supply
    side, increasing supply, particularly from natural forests is out of question. With the commitment to
    alleviate the pressure on natural forests, the national annual timber production is in fact to be reduced
    significantly to a sustainable level given the current forest condition. This big reduction of timber
    production inevitably extended the discrepancy between timber supply and demand which is already
    sizeable. The challenge therefore, is to accelerate the development of plantation forests which will
    produce timber substituting natural-forest timber, and to facilitate the restructuring of wood processing
    industry.
•   Facilitating resource-based forest management. Sustainable forest management demands for the re-
    orientation from extractive timber-based to conservative resource-based management. A major
    challenge is to provide adequate legal instruments and planning frameworks enabling commercial
    utilization of forest services (water, tourism, carbon sequestration) and various non-timber forest
    products.
•   Bringing decentralization back to the right course. The intention of decentralization is to promote
    sustainable management of forests in the regions and at the same time to increase fairness to local
    people in utilizing forest resources, hence contribute to the development of the provinces and districts
    as well as people’s welfare. Yet, the implementation beginning in 2001 has been heavily characterized
    by misperceptions. Some local governments translated decentralization to be a total independence in
    utilizing forest resources within their region, neglecting the very nature of the resources as a life support
    system that recognizes no administrative boundaries. In general, while decentralization is expected to
    be a big leap toward more transparent and fair forest resources management, it turned out that it raised
    substantial negative excesses. This trend represents a major threat facing the forestry sector, and
    bringing decentralization back toward the intended direction is a major challenge.
•   Preventing forest fire and lost of biodiversity. Forest fire remains a major threat facing Indonesia’s
    forestry. The main challenge is to prevent extensive forest fires such as those in the past from re-
    happening. This would include finding solutions of the underlying causes of forest fires which are
    predominantly human-related. Other related challenges are extending the capacity of the recently
    developed forest fire brigades and promoting participatory forest fire control.
•   Combating illegal trade of wildlife. Unless stopped, illegal trade of wildlife would rapidly put several
    endangered species to extinction. Given the international dimension of this crime developing a
    concrete regional and global cooperation is a major challenge.
•   Alleviating poverty. Poverty is a multi-sectoral problem. However, an estimated of 48.8 million people
    rely on the forestry sector for their livelihoods either formally or informally indicating the significant role
    forestry sector may play in poverty eradication. On the other hand, poverty is considered the


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    fundamental reason leading to forest degradation; poverty is a hot bed of illegal logging and
    unsustainable practices of forest resource utilization. Therefore, alleviating people’s poverty remains
    part of the ultimate challenge of the forestry sector.
•   Improving data availability and quality. Incomplete and inaccurate forestry data have been among
    factors hindering forest management planning in Indonesia. Building a representative and reliable
    database system assessable by all stakeholders is therefore, still a challenge.
•   Assuring sustainable forest management funding. Assuring fund availability is a cross-cut challenge
    facing Indonesia’s forestry sector. Given the current condition of the natural forests and the
    conservation and rehabilitation policy, natural forest timber would be no longer a major source of
    funding. It is therefore very important to explore and promote revenues from non-wood as well as
    forest services such as tourism and carbon sequestration.


Forest Role in Reducing Global Temperature
Forests play an important role as a climate stabilizer through its function in absorbing carbon gases in order
to reduce greenhouse gases impact. This understanding is very crucial as many parties understand that
deforestation (as a linkage between land-use and forestry) can become source of emissions. This
understanding would be mis-leading, because a definition of forests is a group of trees and through
photosynthesis process as the tree’s age up to the maximum yield functioning as carbon sink. Open lands,
both from forest or land clearing can become sources of atmospheric carbon and other gases when they
heated by sunshine.
Mr. George W. Bush, the President of USA “Major Economies Meeting on Energy Security and Climate
Change (27-28 September 2007 in Washington D.C.) stated that “the world’s forests help reduce the
amount greenhouse gas in the atmosphere by storing carbon dioxide in trees. But when our forests
disappear, the concentration of greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere increase. We need to preserve
and expand forests at home and abroad.”
Global common actions to solve global warming and climate change problems are needed to be done by all
parties in the world, including developed and developing countries. Some of them are reducing deforestation
and forest degradation, combating illegal log and illegal trade, which causes deforestation rate significantly.
Furthermore, no more open lands should be promoted and tree planting should be conducted in any
spaces, not only in the forests. Trees will naturally reducing earth temperature. This understanding should
be refreshed and disseminated to all elements of society, such as government, private, politicians as well.
Trees is a curb on dismiss emission. Indonesia has never yet dismiss all the forest, so all parties should
assist Indonesian effort to secure its forests.

Finally, let us approach climate change not simply as a looming future threat, but as a present opportunity to
work together, a chance to design a better and more sustainable approach to fuel human development, a
chance to lift millions of people out of poverty and into the promise of the global economy and a chance to
protect and preserve our natural world -- not only for future generations, but also for those of us who are
now living.




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