Strengthening Forest Management Unit by potential natural resources identification
Communication Coordinator in Palangka Raya, Central Kalimantan, WWF-Indonesia
Following up the success of supporting P2RK (Katingan Rotan Farmer Groups) to acquired FSC certification on their rattan, which arguably the first one to get FSC certification of rattan farmer group in Indonesia, WWF by the support of IKEA continue its effort in securing and increasing rattan market value on farmer level by collaborating with related partner in Central Kalimantan. One example is by collaborating with Forest Management Unit (FMU) of Katingan Hulu/FMUXVII.
Forest Management Unit has a very strategic role in preserving and managing the non-timber forest products and environmental services together with local community that will garner additional income to local community. However, being just established with relatively have shortage both on human resource and funding, it’s a dauting process to find out natural resource potential that lies within the FMU. That’s why FMU Katingan Hulu and WWF-Indonesia collaborated in conducting the identification study of non-timber forest products and environmental services during May - June 2018.
The study was carried out by the support of a scholar from Palangkaraya University, whom along with FMU of Katingan Hulu and WWF-Indonesia conducted the study that include 16 villages within the jurisdictions of FMU of Katingan Hulu. Based on the study result that has identified 17 types of non-timber forest product, the most potential and plentiful are rattan and bamboo which are found almost in every surveyed villages. There are 7 types of rattan found, 2 types cultivated by the local and 5 types endemic wild rattan. Some environmental services identified such as water resource in Sepan Apoi and Sepan Takabah, eco-tourism potential such as waterfall and lake Mare.
As mentioned by Dr. Renhart Jemi, (forestry lecturer in Palangkaraya University), that Forest Management Unit shall be the regulator, motivator and facilitator for local community welfare that lives within FMU area. Non-timber forest products particularly rattan, has an emotional bound with local culture especially Dayak people who use rattan in cultural ceremony, furniture and even as a delicious dish.
Sudirman, the head of community empowerment and natural resource protection section FMU of Katingan Hulu stated that WWF-Indonesia has been very supportive in supporting FMU Katingan Hulu to conduct the study. Hopefully in the future WWF could also support the rattan certification and link the farmer to relevant buyers, he said.
The identification study of non-timber forest products and environmental services is important part that can be used as a reference for a followed action to work on business plan and the strategy on ecotourism development of Forest Management Unit of Katingan Hulu that will be carried out afterwards.