Climate Change, Peatland, and Development in Tropical Forest Countries

Peatlands are one of the major sources of greenhouse gases emission even though their overall surface area is relatively small, i.e. only 3% including forested peatlands. It has been found that the disturbance on these lands due to human activities such as agricultural expansion and drainage construction, peat mining, combined with extreme climate maniphestations contributed to the degradation of about 65 million ha of peatland area globally. It is estimated about these disturbances resulted about 3 Gt CO2 per year, or about 5% of the global carbon budget. Further utilization of the pristine peatland and application of unsustainable peatland management may hamper global efforts in limiting the release of GHG emission to the atmosphere.

Therefore, policies, strategies and technologies for improvement the management of peatland is very crucial to enable the achievement of global commitments to mitigate climate change, as outlined in the Paris Agreement. Many good practices have been implemented to manage the peatland in sustainable ways. Indonesia is one of the tropical countries that have about 14 million hectares of peatland, and have developed a number of policies and actions for reducing the emission from the peatland.

This paper provides assessment on the potential of reducing emission from peatland in one of tropical forest countries that have large peatland, i.e. Indonesia. This paper highlighted a number of the cases on the application of technologies on peat restoration and rewetting as well as water management and their potential contribution to meet the Indonesian NDC emission reduction target. – Rizaldi Boer, Annuri Rosita, Marcel K. Silviu, and Hadi S Pasaribu. – Featuring image.

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