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Climate Project
5
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Rimba Raya Biodiversity Reserve

Groundbreaking conservation project, safeguarding a vast tropical peat swamp forest and its endangered inhabitants.

Project type
Conservation
Location
Indonesian Borneo
Accreditor
Climate, Community & Biodiversity Standards

Location

Where we're making a difference

Indonesian Borneo

The reserve is located on the island of Borneo in the Province of Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, where ever-expanding palm oil plantations have wreaked havoc on the forest and the communities and wildlife that depend on it. The project provides a critical buffer to the Tanjung Puting National Park, home to world-renowned Camp Leakey research centre and is bounded by the Java Sea to the south, and the Seruyan River to the east.

Accreditor

About the evaluators

Supporting land use projects in addressing climate change, benefitting local communities and smallholders, and conserving biodiversity.

Learn more

About

The details this project

The Rimba Raya Biodiversity Reserve, an expanse nearly equivalent to the size of Singapore, encompasses 64,000 hectares of diverse tropical peat swamp forest. This unique ecosystem boasts up to 1,000 plant and animal species per hectare, making it one of the planet's most critically endangered environments. Within this expansive area, ongoing initiatives prioritise environmental conservation, community engagement, and climate regulation. Rimba Raya stands as the largest privately funded orangutan reserve globally, hosting one of the last relic populations of wild orangutans. Moreover, it serves as one of the world's major carbon repositories. As the world's largest REDD+ project (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation), Rimba Raya is at the forefront of environmental efforts. The pioneering project developer, InfiniteEARTH, introduced the world's inaugural REDD methodology in 2009.

Fauna diversity

The Rimba Raya Biodiversity Reserve serves as a sanctuary for 122 mammal species and 300 bird species, with a notable population of the endangered Borneo Orangutan. Originally inhabiting tropical forests across Thailand, Southern China, Malaysia, and Indonesia, this great ape species is now restricted to fragmented areas on Sumatra and Borneo islands.

Flora diversity

The reserve boasts diverse vegetation, including mangrove swamps, wetlands, freshwater swamp forests, peat swamp forests, heath vegetation, and lowland mixed dipterocarp forests. Historical environmental disturbances such as logging, burning, and agriculture have influenced the vegetation types, resulting in changes like post-fire shrubland and regenerating logged forests.

Projects and initiatives

Community outreach

In collaboration with Infinite Earth, the Rimba Raya project has initiated community programs addressing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Focused on the welfare of marginalised women and children, these initiatives aim to provide alternative income streams, prevent deforestation-linked industries, and offer essential resources like water filters, cookstoves, and subsidised healthcare.

Biodiversity preservation

The Rimba Raya REDD+ project strives to halt deforestation in Central Kalimantan, which contributes over 75% of Indonesia's greenhouse gas emissions. Partnering with renowned Primatologist Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas, the project aims to provide natural habitats for endangered orangutans. Additionally, it supports the Orangutan Foundation International and their care center, working towards reintroducing rehabilitated orangutans into the wild within the Rimba Raya Reserve.

Education

A long-term goal is to provide education to all children in and around the concession, including supplies, uniforms, and scholarships. Libraries have been established, and scholarships are awarded to dedicated children through cooperation with local governments. Since 2015, InfiniteEARTH has provided scholarship funds to 35 schools as part of the Rimba Raya initiative.

Floating clinic

Introduced in 2016, the Rimba Raya floating clinic enhances health practices by providing child nutritional programs and health services to 10 villages along the Seruyan River. This initiative overcomes previous challenges of inaccessibility and affordability, offering rural health services, family planning, prenatal care, and health education outreach programs.


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