Jurisdictional Approach To Sustainability: Lessons Learnt From Private Sector Action In Aceh Tamiang, Indonesia
In the Indonesian district of Aceh Tamiang, growers, buyers and end consumers of palm oil have united behind the local government to help make the entire jurisdiction a sustainable source of commodities and protect the Leuser Ecosystem, a 2.6-million-hectare area of tropical forest spanning multiple districts.
This jurisdictional approach to sustainability in Aceh Tamiang is possible due to leadership from the district government, supported by civil society organizations, companies, local communities and other stakeholders. Such government commitment is vital: it is the government that will need to define policies and pass regulations to tackle systemic issues that affect companies’ ability to meet their sustainability pledges.
In Aceh Tamiang, shared jurisdictional-level goals have been set through a compact, and great progress has been made. Alternative livelihoods projects and smallholder training in good agricultural practices are taking place to help achieve these common targets. A multi-stakeholder forum called the Center of Excellence for Sustainable Plantations (Pusat Unggulan Perkebunan Lestari, or PUPL) has been set up to coordinate the work of civil society organizations, companies and others to bring sustainable land use across the district. Successes have snowballed and drawn in additional partners, each of which is contributing resources according to its ability.