Expansion of Land Degradation Become a Leading Issue in the G20

3222940774 Delegation of the second G20 Sherpa meeting upon arrival at Messah Island, Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara (12/07/2022) (Photo by: ANTARA)

Land degradation related to the destruction of mangroves and peatlands as well as biodiversity became an issue that was deepened at the second G20 Sherpa meeting in Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara. Director General of Pollution Control and Environmental Damage at the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Sigit Reliantoro in Labuan Bajo said this discussion was a continuation of the G20 Presidency which was previously held in Saudi Arabia in 2020 and in Italy in 2021.

"The G20 President in Indonesia has expanded the discussion of land degradation not only on land, but also other ecosystems, especially in mangroves and peatlands because they will become the flagship of the Indonesian Presidency," said Sigit in Labuan Bajo (12/07/2022).

Sigit said the discussion on wetlands has just entered the agenda of the G20 Presidency in Italy. Meanwhile, the discussion on environmental issues in Saudi Arabia is more on global initiatives to reduce land degradation and Indonesia has the potential to cooperate with a number of countries for the knowledge transfer process. Because Indonesia has had regulations and implemented policies on peatlands since 2017.

"Argentina, Peru, Congo don't have that experience. That's what we want to transfer for South-South, South-North cooperation," said Sigit.

In Indonesia, there is already an International Tropical Peatland Center (ITPC) that can be a center for exchanging frameworks of experience. The inauguration of the ITPC secretariat in 2018 was marked by a joint declaration from representatives of the Government of the Republic of Indonesia with the Government of the Republic of Congo and the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

"If there is a financing opportunity, we can invite Congo and Peru to study implementation in Indonesia and make environmental diplomacy there," said Sigit.

This idea is also said to have the support of all members of the G20 delegation. In fact, there have been requests to expand the agenda on wetlands beyond just the mangroves.

"They asked not only the mangroves and mangroves but also the whole wetland to be encouraged to be expanded." The forum also set Indonesia as a promoter for the wetland issue. 

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