From 2009-2013, the deforestation rate in Indonesia reached 1.13 million hectares per year (FWI, 2014). Many experts stated that over-exploitation, illegal logging and encroachment are widespread and contributing to the process of deforestation in Indonesia. Recently, mining and palm oil plantation expansions also became more significant causes of deforestation.
Sharp criticism from CSOs towards the deforestation rate is due to weakness of forest governance practices implemented by the government, as confirmed by the results of the Land and Forest Governance Index (LFGI) measured by The Asia Foundation (TAF) and its partners in 2014. On a scale from 0 to 100, the average of LFGI is only 22.7 point, which means the governance practice still in poor category (TAF, 2015). The weakness of forest governance can be also seen from the forest fires which are repeated every year, including the highly publicized fires during 2015.
How do the stakeholders seek to address forest fires and deforestation? What policies should be issued by the Indonesian Government? What efforts should be done by NGOs and research institutions in addressing deforestation and forest fires? What are the opportunities and challenges should be consider to overcome forest fires? The session will discuss these questions and explore the solutions.