Denpasar – Representatives from the United States Agency for International Development and Walton Family Foundation signed a memorandum of understanding today at the Economist World Ocean Summit to improve Indonesia’s marine biodiversity conservation and fisheries management.
At the signing, U.S. Ambassador Joseph R. Donovan Jr. said, “This is an exciting collaboration that we hope will support Indonesia’s efforts to protect precious resources and expand our strategic maritime partnership.”
USAID and Walton Family Foundation intend to work through the Indonesia Marine Conservation and Sustainable Fisheries Alliance with private companies, fishing communities, and related government agencies to monitor deep-water fisheries, improve management of ocean resources, promote effective governance, and encourage private-sector collaboration to improve sustainable fisheries and marine conservation around the country. A World Bank analysis estimated that global overfishing results in more than 80 billion USD in lost revenue for fishermen and the fishing industry.
USAID Mission Director Erin McKee said, “For USAID, it’s a model partnership that engages the private sector in developing technology to support sustainable marine and fisheries management.”
“Rebuilding the world’s fisheries and conserving ocean biodiversity are among the most pressing conservation challenges of our time,” said Barry Gold, environment program director at the Walton Family Foundation. “We are especially pleased to be working with USAID in Indonesia, as it brings enormous technical expertise and can focus on priority areas over the long term.”
Under the agreement, USAID and Walton Family Foundation are planning to commit $15 million in funds and expertise to collaborate on various initiatives, including the Blue Abadi Fund, which will be launched on the sidelines of the Oceans Summit in Bali. The Blue Abadi Fund links various donors with the government of Indonesia to support long-term conservation work in the biologically-rich Bird’s Head Seascape area of West Papua and Papua provinces.
Today’s agreement also expands the impact for two of USAID’s current marine resource conservation activities: Indonesia Sustainable Ecosystem Advanced (SEA) and Supporting Nature and People – Partnership for Enduring Resources (SNAPPER).
USAID is an independent U.S. federal government agency that participates in international development by supporting economic growth, agriculture and trade, global health, democracy, conflict mitigation and management, environmental protection, and humanitarian efforts around the globe. In Indonesia, USAID provides development assistance for the benefit of the Indonesian people under the terms of assistance agreements executed with the government of Indonesia.
About the Walton Family Foundation
At the Walton Family Foundation, we believe that conservation solutions that make economic sense stand the test of time. We work to achieve lasting change by creating new and unexpected partnerships among conservation, business and community interests to build durable solutions to important problems.
Through its environmental initiatives, the foundation is investing in two of the most important conservation issues of our time: restoring the health of the oceans through sustainable fisheries, and preserving functioning rivers and the quality and availability of fresh water they provide. This work spans four initiatives: Oceans, Colorado River, Mississippi River and Coastal Gulf of Mexico.