As the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP28 unfolds in Dubai, Indonesia’s environmental and climate strategies are taking center stage.

Indonesia represented by the Minister of Environment and Forestry, Siti Nurbaya, is showcasing its comprehensive approach to climate change at the meeting. The country’s agenda includes addressing the Global Stocktake findings, emphasizing the need for collective achievement in climate action, and balancing mitigation and adaptation efforts with equitable climate financing.

A significant highlight of Indonesia’s environmental efforts is its notable success in reducing deforestation. Research from the World Resources Institute (WRI) has confirmed a 65% reduction in primary forest loss in Indonesia since 2015, the highest of any country globally. This achievement has been due to effective government policies, including fire prevention measures, a moratorium on new licenses for primary forests and peatlands, and concerted efforts in peatland restoration.

It is understood that Norway and Indonesia will be jointly announcing new contribution commitments to Indonesia as part of its results-based payments (RBP) for deforestation. Payments are now expected to total nearly USD340 million.

In addition to forests, Indonesia has made strides in marine conservation, particularly in protecting and rehabilitating seagrass meadows. Recognized for hosting a significant portion of the world’s seagrass meadows, Indonesia sees this as a vital component of its carbon sequestration strategy. The Seagrass Blue Carbon Mitigation Action Profile aims to leverage these meadows for carbon storage, in line with the country’s greenhouse gas reduction goals under the Paris Agreement.

Indonesia has updated its nationally determined contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement, targeting a 31.8% reduction in emissions from the business-as-usual scenario, with a focus on land use, forestry, and the maritime sector. This commitment is backed by strategic plans for marine policies, emphasizing the development and protection of coastal environments and vital ecosystems.

At COP28, Indonesia’s participation aligns with the conference’s focus on accelerating climate action. The country’s approach resonates with COP28’s themes, such as fast-tracking energy transitions, transforming climate finance, and emphasizing inclusive and nature-centric climate actions.

Indonesia’s presence at COP28 in Dubai is a testament to its leadership in environmental protection and climate action. Its significant progress in reducing deforestation and advancing marine conservation, alongside a robust commitment to emission reductions demonstrate a holistic approach to addressing the climate crisis. This leadership is crucial in the global pursuit of sustainable development and effective climate policy-making – this is something that European leaders and policymakers should be noticing.