We at the Bukit Lawang Trust believe that taking care of the natural environment and protecting planet Earth is not just an occupation of a few individuals, but the responsibility of every single one of us. That is why, every one of the programmes we run are built around the United Nations 17 sustainable development goals. By doing this we ensure that the amazing work that our volunteers do on our programs not only makes a long lasting positive change, but also works towards the preservation and protection of our natural environment.
So what exactly are the SDGs?
In September 2015, the United Nations created a '2030 Agenda' for Sustainable Development that includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs. This Agenda emphasizes working together not as a religion race or nation, but as a species. United in our common goal of achieving sustainable development for everyone everywhere.
Click on the Icons below to find out more about each goal.
Does this look like paradise?
More than 2.4 million acres of Indonesian rainforest is cleared and lost each year.
Rainforest Action Network
Most of this destruction is just to grow one plant. Palm Oil.
Large areas of tropical forests and other ecosystems with high conservation values have been cleared to make room for vast monoculture oil palm plantations. This clearing has destroyed critical habitats for many endangered species—including Rhinos, Elephants and Tigers & the Sumatran Orangutan.
Burning forests to make room for the crop is also a major source of greenhouse gas emissions. Intensive cultivation methods have resulted in soil pollution and erosion and water contamination.
The Sumatran Orangutan:
In the last 100 years, the population of Orangutans has gone from approximately 230,000 to just 7,500 currently living in in the Leuser Ecosystem in North Sumatra. And with a decrease in population of around 1000 every year, the Sumatran Orangutan is on the verge of Extinction.
Most of this is caused by the destruction of their natural habitat.
Orangutan habitat in North Sumatra is being lost at an extremely high rate, mainly due to fire and conversion of forests to oil palm plantations and other agricultural development. This species depends on high-quality forests. Widespread forest fires, many set deliberately to clear land for plantations, are becoming a regular disaster. Not only do fires destroy vast areas of orangutan habitat, but thousands of these slow-moving apes are thought to have burned to death, unable to escape the flames.
What the Trust is doing
"Sedikit Demi Sedikit lama lama Menjadi Bukit"
What is this?
Our motto, "Sedikit demi Sedikit lama lama Menjadi Bukit" translates in English to "Little by Little we climb the mountain". It speaks of the challenges we face as a species in tackling Human caused climate change, and our willingness to push forward through adversity to preserve our shared home on Earth.
We at the Trust believe that tackling climate change and preserving our natural environment is not only important but vital for our species survival, and the survival of all other species we share this planet with. It is not a occupation of a few dedicated individuals, but the responsibility of every human on earth. Only together can we thrive.
Below are just some of the vital conservation initiatives we run in North Sumatra Indonesia, and we are only just getting started!
Since 2019 we have aligned ourselves with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, adapting and developing all of our programs to work towards these vital objectives. In doing so, we are ensuring that the impact our programs, volunteers and staff have in Indonesia, is positive and long lasting.
Ecological Farming Project:
Through the delivery of our Ecological Farming Program we teach local farmers about sustainable best practices, and how they can have a successful farm without harming the natural habitat. We also promote the use of natural farming practices and permacultures, and help to educate communities on the harms of pesticide usage and palm oil crops.
We have teamed up with the amazing people at Erna's Ecological Farming Project and their Tree Nursery to help promote regenerative conservation. Having Planted over 200 trees already in collaboration with several land owners the Tree Nursery has been a huge success. Whats more! From 2021 we will be planting 1 Tree for every single volunteer that joins us on our programs.
For 13 years, we have been providing conservation education to all of our students from over 7 different rural communities along the border of the Leuser Ecosystem. This includes education in topics such as:
- Climate Change
- Habitat & Species conservation
- Deforestation & Reforestation
- Recycling (incl Eco Brick Production)
- Pollution & Carbon emissions
Guardians of the Forest:
In 2019 we teamed up with the amazing people at Darwin Animal Doctors to develop the 'Youth Ranger Program'. This program teaches our students about Jungle Ranger patrol duties, wildlife conservation, protection of the natural environment and sustainable living. The program aims to inspire in our students an empathy for the natural world and in doing so facilitate its long term preservation.
Offsetting Carbon Emissions:
We've teamed up with our consortium of local partners to offset the carbon emissions produced from our volunteers flights, by supporting reforestations initiatives along the boundary lands of the Leuser Ecosystem.
Did you know.... on average 1 tree removes a tonne of CO2 from the atmosphere in its lifetime.
Bukit Lawang Trust Conservation Festival
Each year in August, the Bukit Lawang Trust runs a large scale conservation festival, based in or around the community of Bukit Lawang in North Sumatra. 2020s Festival was unfortunately cancelled due to safety concerns with the global COVID-19 Pandemic, however our festival in 2019 was a huge success. The festival brought together hundreds of people from all over the world to discuss approaches to tackling climate change in Indonesia. This included over 23 NGOs and 40 different organisations.
2019s festival saw organisations, charities and individual make over 40 public pledges for Funding resources and support towards conservation efforts within the Leuser Ecosystem.
Not to mention a guest appearance from Farwiza Farhan, a committed climate activist and conservationist as well as chairperson of Haka Sumatra.
Palm Oil: the facts
Is there such a thing as 'sustainable palm oil'?
Click the image to find out more.