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The Advances in Sustainable Forestry and Agriculture in West Papua

by Senaman
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There are several protected forest areas in Indonesia including West Papua and the other four provinces in the easternmost land of the archipelago.

Based on the data back in 2019, the land has the largest forest area that is officially protected by the government. The area covers around 7.8 hectares.

In fact, West Papua’s rainforest contributes the biggest oxygen supply to Indonesia.

Meanwhile, in the agriculture sector, West Papua also has massive potential to develop into a major agricultural goods producer.

This has driven the government to continue supporting agricultural development spread across the districts within the province.

The Crop Varieties of Forestry and Agriculture in West Papua

West Papua’s agricultural crops are very various and cannot only be handle by the locals.

For example, there is a farm of oil palm where Javanese migrants are hire as some of the farmers. They all also grow cocoa trees, bananas, cassava, chilies, beans, spinach, sweet potatoes, and many more.

Many tribes in West Papua such as Hatam tribe has been continuously cultivating their land utilizing the shifting method within an annual cycle.

They do not really harvest their crops all at once, therefore, there is no “harvest season” for them. They tend to gradually check out every crop of vegetables and fruits before harvesting them.

Generally, the very first agricultural item they harvest is spinach, after three months of planting and growing process.

In the meantime, West Papua is also enrich with rainforest areas widely known as the great sources of medical ingredients.

These plants are commonly use in modern medication.

As a matter of fact, The Young People’s Trust for the Environment stated that rainforests have contributed at least 25% of the world’s medicine substances.

The rainforest plants can usually heal the symptoms of various diseases, such as malaria, inflammation, muscle tension, rheumatism,

Arthritis, skin illnesses, post-surgery complications, glaucoma, and even diabetes as well as heart disease.

Why Sustainable Forestry and Agriculture are Important

It is very crucial to maintain the existence of agriculture and forestry in Papua land, especially West Papua.

There is a large biodiversity within the rainforest areas in the province. Some of the biotas are nearly endanger and this will in turn endanger the balance of the entire ecosystem.

If only one of the ecosystem’s components went extinct, then the whole food chain would meet a huge trouble.

This, in the end, will also cause damage to the community living nearby the forests.

Furthermore, the government of Indonesia has also targeted the whole nation to be high-income in 2030.

In other words, there has to be rapid economy development in the whole country, including in the eastern part of it.

However, economic growth will be achieve only if the agricultural and forestry growth is also properly reach. This is mainly why sustainability in both forestry and agricultural sectors are very important.

The Impressive Advances Done So Far

The impressive advances done so far are the central government efforts in achieving the Green Growth Framework (GGF).

There are five expectations in implementing the eco-friendly plans, such as:

§  Productive and healthy ecosystems in providing environmental services

§  Sustainable economic development

§  Inclusive as well as equitable growth

§  Reducing gas emissions of the greenhouse

§  Economic, social, and environmental resilience

In addition to the green development programs, the regional government in West Papua has also cooperated with BPS dan Pusat Riset Kependudukan (Central Bureau of Statistics and Center for Population Research) to carry out the green plans in the region.

The attempts to support sustainable development of forestry and agriculture in West Papua are including energy conservation,

Production of high-quality commodities with zero deforestation, recycling process and building infrastructure with low-emissions, eco-friendly designs, and so on.


Therefore, the regional government also hopes that many more young Papuans will take part in the green development going on.

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