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Indonesia

Pantai Bahagia Village

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Conservation benefit: Protection of 50 acres of mangroves plus replanting of 197 acres, for 15 years

Community benefit: Community and mangrove education center; water storage tanks

Date Approved: 06.2017

Mangroves

This project protects mangroves, which trap more CO2 than any other kind of forest and as a result, slow global warming.

Although Pantai Bahagia is not far from Jakarta, it is a tranquil place of rice fields and mangrove forests. Endangered Javan langurs leap through the trees, and tidal areas are home to egrets, plovers, and other wading birds.

The area, however, suffers from its proximity to urban development. Industrial waste has polluted the nearby Citarum River, which empties into the Javan Sea. People cut many mangroves to make room for now-abandoned fish and shrimp ponds, causing siltation and erosion. As a result, the people of Pantai Bahagia must travel outside the village, by boat, to buy clean water for themselves and their animals.

The village is proposing to patrol and protect the remaining mangroves, about 50 acres.  They will also replant almost 200 more acres with three mangrove species that grow well in local conditions. To help the project succeed, they will get expert advice from a nearby environmental institute.

Working with local organization Taman Belajar Masyrakat (Wildlife Learning Communities) and the Muaragembong Environmental Conservation Forum, Seacology is making a grant that will be used to install a water storage tank in the village and to build a community center. The center will focus on environmental education, particularly mangrove ecology. There, local youth will learn about the environment and how keeping it healthy is critical to their well-being. Village leaders hope this knowledge will give the youth pride in and a sense of connection to the natural environment.

Project Updates

December 2018

The public toilets improved village health almost immediately, according to field representative Irman Meilandi. The new facilities also have fostered a sense of pride, and villagers are keeping them clean and well-maintained. The mangrove education center is finished and has been used for livelihood, political, social, cultural, educational, and environmental projects. In Irman’s words, the center “created a bridge that balances inequality in the community.” Community members are planting mangroves, knowing that they are of crucial importance to this flood-prone village, and promoting mangrove tourism.

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May 2018

Water tanks and toilets have been installed in six locations in the village, which will significantly improve the quality of life for the people who live there. Construction of the mangrove education center is a little more than halfway done.

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January 2018

High tides and flooding have caused some delay in delivering building materials to the village, but four water tanks have been installed, and installation of one more is underway.

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