About Us

Indonesia’s tropical forests and waterways are among the most biodiverse ecosystems on earth. However, overuse and exploitation are rapidly degrading these invaluable resources. Furthermore, the limited protections that exist are unable to prevent deforestation and biodiversity loss. To ensure that current and future generations can continue to benefit from these resources, Indonesia and the United States are improving resource management and conservation. At least 30 million Indonesians depend directly on the country’s forests, and millions more rely on ecosystem biodiversity for breathable air, fertile soils, drinkable water and steady incomes. Sustained economic prosperity for Indonesia and its trade partners is intimately linked to the conservation of these fragile, globally-important ecosystems.

PRESERVING BIODIVERSITY AND REDUCING EMISSIONS

In partnership with the Government of Indonesia, USAID BIJAK, meaning ‘wise’ in Indonesian, is improving the management of Indonesian forests and conservation areas, strengthening legal protections for threatened wildlife and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. To bolster biodiversity conservation, USAID BIJAK facilitates coordination between the Government of Indonesia and civil society organizations to strengthen relevant laws, regulations, and natural resources management tools and systems. Furthermore, USAID BIJAK coordinates with local partners to adapt innovative local approaches to improved management and conservation for use across the country.

PROGRAM ACTIVITIES

BIJAK facilitates collaboration between Government and other partners to improve related laws, regulations, and management tools and systems.  BIJAK’s efforts focus on the following issue areas:

IMPROVING MANAGEMENT OF CONSERVATION AREAS

Indonesia’s network of conservation areas includes 54 national parks and cover 27 million hectares – a combined area roughly the size of Colorado. USAID BIJAK works to improve and protect ths network by:

  • Helping government partners oversee conservation areas using more effective, data-based policies and regulations, including policies for preventing oil palm plantations from illegally encroaching onto national parks; and

  • Strengthening Indonesians’ sense of pride in and responsibility for their national parks, thereby stimulating demand for better conservation.

IMPROVING MANAGEMENT OF FORESTS

Forest cover in government-managed areas has suffered significantly due to inadequate oversight, planning and management. USAID BIJAK strengthens the government’s ability to oversee government-managed forests, which cover 64 percent of Indonesia’s land, by:

  • Strengthening Indonesia’s reform efforts by helping its Forest Management Units (FMUs) to better preserve delicate forest ecosystems while meeting growing human demands on forests;

  • Expanding the use of innovative funding strategies to make conservation and low emissions development more attractive to developers and investors; and

  • Protecting areas of intact, virgin forest that are not yet under government management.

INCREASING PROTECTION OF KEY SPECIES

Wildlife trafficking undermines security, rule of law and sustainable economic growth. The loss of iconic species reduces Indonesia’s prospects for nature-based tourism and sustainable fisheries. USAID BIJAK combats wildlife trafficking by:

  • Supporting the Government of Indonesia in strengthening its commitment to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES;

  • Collaborating with public and private sector partners to disrupt wildlife trafficking activities in the domestic transportation sector; and

  • Supporting campaigns to reduce domestic demand for wildlife and their products, including sharks and wild birds, such as the critically-endangered helmeted hornbill.