Source:Congo Basin peatland
The Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MoEF) inaugurated the interim secretariat of the International Tropical Peatland Center (ITPC) on 30 October 2018 in Jakarta.
The interim ITPC secretariat is located in Bogor, West Java, where the Ministry of Environment's Research, Development, and Innovation Agency collaborates with the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR). ITPC will play a role in the research to promote sustainable peat management.
MoEF also stated that the ITPC will serve as an organization that involves various countries, especially those with peatlands, as well as the private sector and other research institutions to contribute to supporting sustainable peat management.
At the inauguration of the ITPC establishment, a declaration was jointly read by the Minister of Environment and Forestry, Siti Nurbaya, as a representative of the Indonesian government, the Minister of Tourism and Environment of the Republic of Congo, Arlette Soudan-Nonalaut, and the Director General of Forestry and Sustainable Development of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ilanga Longofa. The Republic of the Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo has recently received international attention following the discovery of extensive peatlands in the Congo basin within the territory of these two countries. The peat in the area, referred to as Cuvette Centrale, has an area of 145,500 sq km (14.55 million hectares) with 30.6 Gigatonnes of stored carbon. The complete research outcomes of this discovery can be downloaded (open access) at link.springer.com or via the appendices of this article.
The peat area in Cuvette Centrale could be the largest in the world. According to the Research and Development Center for Agricultural Land Resources, Indonesia’s total peat area reached 14.9 million hectares in 2011. However, this number is predicted to decrease due to subsidence resulting from land clearing and drainage.