Remarks by Ambassador Blake at Announcement of $250 Million USAID Environment Program, Jakarta
Good afternoon and thank you for taking the time to learn more about the U.S. Government’s new efforts to support Indonesia’s rich and diverse natural environment.
Many of you have reported on the U.S. Government’s huge investments in Indonesia’s environment sector through various U.S. agencies over the years. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has been our lead organization in building partnerships with Indonesia to design, develop and manage conservation programs.
Tonight, we are officially launching USAID’s $250 million portfolio of environment activities to be implemented over the next five years.
USAID – in partnership with Bappenas – will implement activities under this portfolio that will conserve biodiversity and mitigate the negative impacts of climate change and man-made as well as natural disasters.
The repercussions of those disasters in terms of environmental degradation, greenhouse gas emissions, and loss of clean and fresh air are felt by Indonesians and the entire global community.
We want to build on the momentum of the recent climate change conference in Paris by announcing this partnership between our two governments to achieve sustainable natural resource management in Indonesia.
The projects under this initiative will address challenges in forestry and land use, marine conservation and fisheries management, clean energy expansion, access to water and sanitation services, adaptation to climate change, and disaster risk reduction.
To achieve results and ensure our $250 million investment has the desired impact, we are proud to working closely on partnerships with:
- the Government at both the local and national level,
- the private sector, and
- civil society – including universities, NGOs, religious groups and community organizations.
We have set some ambitious targets for the next few years; they include:
- Improving the management of 8.4 million hectares of forests and peatland with local community collaboration so that these globally-important biological treasures are less vulnerable to fires;
- Protecting six million hectares of marine ecosystems so future generations can continue to fish and enjoy the most important coral ecosystems on earth;
- Mobilizing $800 million of private investment in clean energy to green Indonesia’s power development and bring electricity to five million homes; and
- Delivering clean water and sanitation services to more than 1.5 million of Indonesia’s poorest citizens.
For USAID globally, our program in Indonesia is AID’s largest anywhere, for several very good reasons:
- Indonesia’s rich biological diversity is extremely important to Indonesia and the global community;
- Indonesia is an important global actor and strategic partner to the U.S.; and
- Indonesia is a model democracy and has a stable economy, vibrant private sector, and strong regional leadership.
Let me stop here and ask our friend Pak Basah to say a few words, and then we can answer some questions.