United States Partners with Indonesia to Address Forest Fires and Haze

United States Partners with Indonesia to Address Forest Fires and Haze (Wikipedia CC)

U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Robert O. Blake, Jr. announced that the United States will contribute an initial $2.75 million USD in assistance to support Indonesian efforts to address the effects of the forest fires and haze.  Ambassador Blake noted: “This assistance is part of the United States’ wider effort to support Indonesian activities to suppress forest fires and to mitigate their effects on human health, as well as to support Indonesian Government efforts to prevent future forest fires.”

This U.S. partnership with the Government of Indonesia will provide immediate assistance to populations affected by haze and smoke, improve the effectiveness of current fire suppression efforts, and address the impact of the fires on vulnerable populations.

The $2.75 million USD assistance package from the United States includes funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to:

  • Help the Government of Indonesia expand their health care centers’ ability to respond to haze-related respiratory illnesses and Indonesian efforts to raise public awareness of the hazards associated with haze in the region.  The funds will be provided through USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) through the American Red Cross to the Indonesian Red Cross.
  • Provide equipment and protective gear to ground based firefighting crews located in the provinces worst hit by forest fires, especially Central Kalimantan.
  • Support a team of U.S. Forest Service technical advisors arriving in Indonesia this week to provide wildfire support.  The team will bring an additional shipment of protective clothing for firefighters, and assist with the operational coordination, remote sensing, and imagery efforts of the Government of Indonesia.