In the last two decades, the impact of environmental damage due to massive development of the Papua region has been increasingly visible. Environmental conservation in the Papua region requires more attention, including involving wider stakeholders to jointly protect the environment of Papua. Youth can be important partners in preserving the environment to ensure environmental benefits and sustainability in regional development.
As part of efforts to encourage the role of Papuan youth in protecting and preserving the environment, the KIPRa Foundation, in collaboration with Pt. PPMA and YWLP, supported by PATTIRO, held a Youth Camp: Youth Action for Environmental Conservation on 29-31 August 2023 at P3W GKI Padang Bulan, Jayapura. This activity aims to increase youth awareness in environmental issues and form a youth forum that can voice climate change issues.
This Youth Camp was attended by 24 youths (10 women and 14 men) from Jayapura Regency (8 people), Sarmi Regency (8 people) and Merauke Regency, South Papua Province (8 people). The participants are expected to be a driving force in voicing and sharing the knowledge gained during this activity related to environmental issues and climate change issues in their respective regions.
In his remarks, the Head of the Environment and Forestry Service of Papua Province, Jan Jan Oramuseray welcomed the purpose of organizing this activity. He hopes that every participant who participates in this Youth Camp activity can monitor government actions and jointly preserve the environment. “Environmental issues can be voiced by cadres of young Papuan activists who care about saving and preserving the environment in the land of Papua,” said Oramuseray.
He also added that currently environmental conservation efforts being carried out by the Government of Papua in restoring the environment are planting bamboo trees along Pasar Enam to Maribu as a form of saving Syklop Nature Reserve.
Director of KIPRa, Irianto Jakobus, explained that Papua’s natural resource wealth needs to be maintained. “Papua has extraordinary natural resources, so many companies and other countries are looking at it. If this potential is not managed properly, it will have an impact on deforestation,” he said. Collaboration with young people who have creativity, enthusiasm, and initiative in protecting the environment needs to be done to overcome deforestation.
PATTIRO Program Manager, Ramlan Nugraha, said Papua’s forests have a wealth of biodiversity. However, biodiversity sustainability faces development challenges that require land. The role of youth is needed to protect forest areas. This activity is an opportunity to discuss the condition of the Land of Papua and encourage the role of youth to contribute to environmental sustainability. “The task of protecting the environment is not only the government, but requires the role of youth,” said Ramlan.