Loading . . .

Indonesian Biosphere Reserve, Is It a Solution?

Biosphere Between Human and Nature (Stefano Barzellotti / Shutterstock)
Biosphere Between Human and Nature (Stefano Barzellotti / Shutterstock)

Generasi Hijau, do you know that earth forms in layers? Human beings and other living things live in one of the layers, called the biosphere. This layer provides us with solid life support.  At the same time, humans cause destruction here. Biosphere reserve comes as a solution to protect it.

Biosphere Reserve

Giam Siak Kecil Biosphere Reserve (publicnews.com)
Giam Siak Kecil Biosphere Reserve (publicnews.com)

Geosphere divides earth into 4 layers; atmosphere, lithosphere,  biosphere, and hydrosphere. We live in biosphere.  It consists of land, water, and air. So, it is closely related to the other three layers of earth. They are connected as a place for creatures to inhabit. This layer has existed since 3.5 billion years ago. 

As life on earth, the biosphere also developed. Unfortunately, rampant development sometimes leads to destruction. Humans again disrupt the biosphere. We have to prevent this. It is important to keep the balance for the sake of ecosystem sustainability. Therefore, efforts are needed to protect it.

In maintaining the balance, Indonesia creates biosphere reserves. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) firstly coined this concept in 1971. Biosphere reserve is a biodiversity conservation area that develops in line with social and economic sustainability. This reserve is established to harmonize environmental conservation and the social and economic development of the community.

Indonesian Biosphere Reserve

Tangkoko Wildlife (Vander San Hulsenbeek / manadosafaris.com)
Tangkoko Wildlife (Vander San Hulsenbeek / manadosafaris.com)

Indonesia has 19 biosphere reserves. Reserves in Indonesia are included in the WNBR (World Network of Biosphere Reserves). In 2020, UNESCO has established 3 new biosphere reserves in Indonesia.: Bunaken Tangkoko Minahasa, Karimunjawa Jepara Muria, and Merapi Merbabu Menoreh. Recently, almost 30 million hectares have become biosphere reserves in Indonesia. Indonesia, which has diverse natural resources, presents a variety of biosphere as well. The biosphere here protects coastal, aquatic, and forest ecosystems.

People believe that biosphere reserve is one of the solutions to maintain the harmony of environmental conservation and socio-economic development. Therefore, the sustainability scheme is a top priority. To maintain harmony, the nature reserve is divided into 3 zones in its management. The first is the core zone which focuses on the conservation area. The second is the buffer zone which functions as a protective core zone. The third is the transition zone for sustainable development.

The Benefit and Threat of Biosphere

Investigation of Illegal Logging in the Giam Siak Kecil Biosphere (riaumandiri.co)
Investigation of Illegal Logging in the Giam Siak Kecil Biosphere (riaumandiri.co)

Even though it is proclaimed as a solution for sustainable economic growth, humans and nature are still contradictory. In fact, 38 biosphere reserves status in Indonesia have been revoked due to natural damage. For example, the Wakatobi Biosphere Reserve ecosystem is threatened by damage. The threat is sand mining carried out by local communities. In this case, people seem to have no choice because of sluggish economic growth. As a deal, the community was allowed to mine sand only with traditional tools to minimize damage.

Indonesia should learn from the Bia Biosphere Reserve in Ghana. The local community is encouraged to develop a green economy. They usually depended on forest products such as cocoa plantations. Now, they are given other alternative livelihoods. For example, mushrooms, snails, and honey bee cultivation. To manage new business opportunities, they are also provided with knowledge and training. This strategy is implemented to forest dependence when the population increases.

Reflecting on those problems, we understand that the status of a “biosphere reserve” requires efforts to maintain a balance between human and natural needs. Don’t let local people survive on their own without any alternative livelihood available.

Author :

Aviaska Wienda Saraswati

Aviaska Wienda Saraswati

Spread the News

Share to Social Media

Subscribe

* indicates required