press release stay productive with non-burning land clearing management
partnership program PT CPI and BGRM
Pekanbaru, 12 January 2021 – Farmers in Kepenghuluan Bangko Bakti, Rokan Hilir, successfully managed peat land into a productive land. On Tuesday, January 12, Serumpun Tani Farmer Groups had the first harvest of three tons of cucumbers from cropland preparation (using a demonstration plot). They also cleaned the peatland in an eco-friendly way that does not use burn method.
Serumpun Tani Farmer Groups is a trainee of non-burning land clearing management or Program Pengelolaan Lahan Tanpa Bakar (PLTB) held by PT. Chevron Pacific Indonesia (PT CPI) partnering with Badan Restorasi Gambut dan Mangrove (BRGM). Besides cucumbers plantation, they also planted other horticulture plants such as chilies, watermelons, pumpkins, kale, red ginger, and galangals.
PLTB implemented in 10 villages in Siak and Rokan Hilir, one of the villages is Kepenghuluan Bangko Bakti. Farmers are trained and guided to apply agricultural techniques and clearing peatland in environmentally friendly manner without fire.
“Besides helping local economy during the pandemic, this program is an effort from PT CPI to support government in reducing forest and land fire and also maintaining the quality of peatland ecosystems.” said PT CPI Corporate Communications Manager, Sonitha Poernomo in a written statement.
The first inaugural harvest in Kepenghuluan Bangko Bakti was attended by Penghulu Bangko Bakti Husni Tamrin, Penghulu Sintong Pusako Zulpami, Danramil Bangko Pusako Sugianto, community leaders, representatives of BRGM and PT CPI Corporate Affairs Asset. Yuyus Afrianto as representative of BRGM said, “We proved that farming method without land burning can be successful. Apart from gaining additional income from harvest, this method also supports peatland restoration that is currently encouraged by the government.”
In the implementation of PLTB since October last year, Cakra Consulting appointed as operation program partner. They trained farmer groups to understand soil and plant conditions, cropland preparation (using a demonstration plot), mulch use, seed planting, and pest infestation protection. Farmer groups also get multifunctional tools, water pumping machines, cutting tools, and hoes.
Previously, farmer groups were unwilling to optimize their peatlands due to the low productivity levels. But now, after learning how to manage peatland properly, they are excited to implement what they have learned to their peatlands. Farmer groups who participated in PLTB also spread their knowledge to other farmers who have not participated in similar program.