Fighting for ecological justice

Forest & Land Governance

In This Section

In 2011, the Indonesian Government introduced Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO)   through the Minister of Agriculture Regulation No. 19 / Ministry of Agriculture / OT.140 /3/2011. In 2015, the regulation was repealed. And the Minister of Agriculture Regulation No. 11 of 2015 was issued. Five years later, the President of Indonesia issued Presidential Decree No. 44 of 2022.

Presidential Decree No. 44 of 2020 stated that Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) is a business system in oil palm plantations that is economically viable, socially culturally appropriate, and environmentally friendly based on the prevailing laws and regulations in Indonesia.

ISPO was born as the outcome of the efforts of Indonesian civil society that convince the government to act decisively on the massive expansion of oil palm plantations, which is often carried out by burning forests, marginalizing indigenous peoples and local communities, and bulldozing the diversity of animals and plants around them.

Presidential Decree No. 44 of 2020 requires Oil Palm Plantations and Oil Palm Planters to have ISPO certification. In the Presidential Regulation, sanctions are from fined to the revocation of the ISPO certificate.

Even so, Presidential Decree No. 44 of 2020 is not without critics. Abu Meridian, a member of Kaoem Telapak, said that the government’s intention to strengthen ISPO is still half-hearted.  He argued that it is because the role of independent Watcher for ISPO is not mentioned clearly in the Presidential Regulation.

“It is not clear that the role of the independent watcher in the presidential regulation can cause them to have no legal power in monitoring the implementation of ISPO certification,” he said, to

He also added, The government did not accommodate the suggestion of civil society regarding the inclusion of human rights principles in the Presidential Regulation. Even though, during public consultations in four regions in 2017, civil society proposed that the Presidential Regulation include the principles of human rights and the principle of traceability.

Seeing the attitude of the Government which is still half-hearted, the dynamics of ISPO strengthening must always be guarded. Kaoem Telapak will continue to watch the dynamics of ISPO strengthening as a manifestation of justice between elements of nature and generations.