July 31 marked the official establishment of the Steering Committee for Sustainable Agriculture Indonesia (SCAI). SCAI was formalized by members from the seven GCF Task Force provinces in Indonesia (Aceh, West Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan, North Kalimantan, East Kalimantan, Papua, and West Papua), plus representatives from the private sector, farmers’ associations, and local NGOs in Balikpapan, East Kalimantan—following the GCF Task Force Regional Workshop the two days before.
The Steering Committee for Sustainable Agriculture Indonesia was first proposed and conceptualized by the GCF Task Force in Jakarta on April 11, 2019. In Balikpapan, members were invited back to establish SCAI frameworks, membership, work procedures, targets, and vision—and, ultimately, formally establish the Steering Committee through a signatory process.
SCAI aims to advance efforts towards sustainable agricultural commodity production practices and reduce deforestation from agricultural production. In Indonesia, the majority of deforestation is driven by commodity crop production—primarily palm oil and coffee plantations—necessitating platforms for advocating sustainable agricultural practices to protect remaining forests from deforestation by the expansion of commodity production.
SCAI’s work plan will focus on oil palm, coffee, rubber, cocoa, and sago, plus any additional leading commodities as determined by SCAI.
The committee will craft programs to enhance:
Data provision and transparency
Legal support for smallholder producers
Sustainable productivity advancements
Protections and incentives for producers (especially smallholders)
Provincial and district governance concerning agricultural sustainability—including the establishment of a multi-stakeholder forum in each of Indonesia’s seven GCF Task Force member provinces
Enhancing partnerships between farmers and commodity purchasing companies
SCAI institutions were determined for the period 2019-2021. During the first two years, programs will focus on data provision and transparency, plus legal support for smallholder producers.
SCAI members from each province will submit activity proposals in mid-August for development into a work plan, to be discussed at the next SCAI meeting. SCAI proposals will be facilitated by the GCF Task Force Indonesia Regional Coordinator, Delon Marthinus, who was appointed as the SCAI Secretariat. Prof. Daddy Ruhiyat, GCF Task Force Delegate from East Kalimantan, was appointed as the Chairperson of the Committee.
In addition to GCF Task Force Delegates from each member region, initial SCAI membership includes representatives from farmers’ associations for palm oil commodities (Palm Oil Farmers Union, SPKS), NGOs involved in sustainable agriculture programs in Indonesia (FFI, IDH, INOBU, TNC, WWF), and palm oil purchasing companies (GAPKI). Additional membership will be determined at the next SCAI meeting—namely, farmers’ associations and private sector companies representing additional commodities.
As a multi-stakeholder platform for collaboration on sustainable agriculture initiatives at the subnational level, SCAI intends to work in conjunction with other subnational programs for improving governance and reducing deforestation in Indonesia’s GCF Task Force member provinces.
Above: Delon Marthinus, GCF Task Force Indonesia Regional Coordinator, congratulates provincial delegates during the SCAI signing ceremony.