Recent estimates in Indonesia indicate that 500,000 people are directly involved in artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM), with 3 million people dependent on income generated by ASM activities. While ASM can be a source of poverty alleviation, the ASM sector is frequently associated with significant environmental impacts including mercury pollution and deforestation. ASM activities in Indonesia operate mostly outside of a formal regulated framework. Following a three-year initial phase of the UN-REDD program in 2012, the Government of Indonesia passed several decrees to curb deforestation, including from ASM activities. In 2013, the Government of Indonesia signed the Minamata Convention on Mercury, a treaty that calls for new measures to formalize and regulate ASM. Now the government needs to increase its understanding of this sector in order to develop appropriate policies and legislation to implement the treaties.
Led by Dr. Sam Spiegel from the University of Edinburgh, in partnership with Yayasan Tambuhak Sinta (YTS) a local NGO, this project provided technical assistance to the Indonesian government at the district, provincial and national levels to improve design and implementation of environmental policies for the ASM sector. The three principal components of the project included:
The dissemination of the project findings informed national authorities and the international community of policy and legislative challenges related to ASM in Indonesia. Through increased knowledge, local and national officials were equipped to work together towards a sustainable development plan that alleviates poverty. The project also benefits miners by increasing their capacity to engage with government and facilitating access to project data to inform the discussion.
By Dr. Sam Spiegel, University of Edinburgh. In this blog, Sam writes about his research for the CIRDI project Capacity-Building for Multi-Level Governance of ASM in Indonesia. Sam is […]