PLTU Asam Asam Won Biodiversity Award

Saturday, 27 June 2020 - Dibaca 1035 kali




NUMBER: 220.Pers/04/SJI/2020

Date: 27 June 2020

PLTU Asam Asam Won Biodiversity Award

Borneo's typical primate, Bekantan kahau (Nasalis larvatus), with its long, unique nose, is listed in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which means that bekantan must not be traded. It's been declared as an "endangered" species in International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List from 30 June 2008.

This primate mascot of the South Kalimatan Province lives in the forests along the rivers in South Kalimantan, and the generation area of PLTU (Steam Power Plant) Asam Asam is no exception. Located 130 km away or about 3 hours by road from the province capital, Banjarmasin, PLTU Asam Asam is home to about 28 bekantan. These bekantan live in the PLTU's 175 hectares concession area in groups along the banks of Asam Asam River.

"We're determined to continue to protect the wealth of natural ecosystem and to conserve the ecological process and ecosystem balance in PLTU Asam Asam area. Living in synergy with nature, in harmony with bekantan," said Dony Ocniza, PLN's Manager of UPK Asam Asam to the team on Friday (26/6).

As one of the PICs of the environment programs, Alda Erfian explained that the conservation of biodiversity in PLTU Asam Asam area is intended to conserve, prevent, and curb activities that may endanger bekantan, with the hope that the coming generations will be able to see endemic animals such as bekantan monkey themselves.

"There's been an increase in bekantan population in our area. There were only 13 back in 2015, and now the number has grown to 28. This is also an effect of feed enrichment. We've been planting rambai (Baccaurea motleyana) trees, and the fruit is bekantan's favorite food," said Alda.

Alda went on to explain that the 100 rambai trees planted in the conservation area have also given protection against seawater intrusion and abrasion, and most importantly, they have contributed to emission reduction.

Moreover, local communities living in Ring 1 of PLTU Asam Asam whose livelihood depends on nipah palm trees now have additional income from renting boats for river cruises to watch bekantan. "We're involving the local communities in various activities, and this is in line with our goal to increase community participation to conserve biodiversity," Alda concluded.

PLTU Asam Asam is committed to environmental conservation efforts while preserving every environmental components for future use. Through this program, in early 2020 PLTU Asam Asam received Indonesia Green Awards (IGA) organized by The La Tofi School of CSR, in Biodiversity Development category. (IY)

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