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Cablegate: Embassy Jakarta Proposal for Science Fellows

VZCZCXYZ0005
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHJA #0013/01 0030821
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 030821Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 7546

UNCLAS JAKARTA 000013

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP/MTS AND OES/STC/EKANE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV TPHY TBIO TRGY ENRG ID
SUBJECT: EMBASSY JAKARTA PROPOSAL FOR SCIENCE FELLOWS

REF: A) SECSTATE 30914 B) JAKARTA 3471 C) JAKARTA 2712 D) JAKARTA
2336

1. (U) Summary. Embassy Jakarta would like to express its interest
in the Embassy Science Fellows Program (ESFP) and request Department
assistance in identifying up to two interested candidates focused on
marine affairs, preferably from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration. Embassy Jakarta has an important opportunity to
support two top Government of Indonesia priorities in 2008: 1) the
Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning System (Ina-TEWS); and 2) The Coral
Triangle Initiative (CTI).

2. (U) Recruiting a highly qualified candidate(s) under the ESFP
will, among other benefits: 1) increase technical support for key
U.S. environmental initiatives; 2) expand the relationship between
U.S. government agencies, the Embassy, and the Indonesia government;
3) support OES' emphasis on creating genuine partnerships with
scientists in the Muslim world; and 4) set a precedent for future
ESFP candidates that demonstrates the exciting projects that are
available in Indonesia. The Embassy is prepared to provide office
space, appropriate housing, and local travel costs. End Summary.

SUMMARY OF INA-TEWS AND CTI
----------------------------

3. (U) Indonesia has moved aggressively to develop the Ina-TEWS,
that, when completed, will serve as a cornerstone of the Indian
Ocean Tsunami Warning System (IOTWS). The IOTWS is a regional
system of national tsunami warning systems designed to provide
warning services across the Indian Ocean basin. Indonesia has set an
initial goal of deploying 22 tsunameters and developing the
infrastructure needed to maintain them before the end of 2008. This
project is led by the State Ministry for Research and Technology
(RISTEK) and is a high priority for Indonesia.

4. (U) The Coral Triangle, a marine area stretching across the
waters between Indonesia, the Philippines, and the Solomon Islands,
contains the richest marine biodiversity in the world, including
some of the highest levels of coral diversity and globally important
fish spawning and production areas. The GOI has referred to the
Triangle as the marine equivalent of the Amazon and Congo basins.
The area supports the livelihoods of some 126 million people. The
GOI has taken a leadership role through the CTI, a multilateral
program seeking to protect this important ecosystem, raising it to
the agenda of the 13th United Nations FCCC Conference of Parties
(COP-13) meeting on climate change in Bali this December. The USG
has announced its intention to commit $4.35 million in new funds to
CTI. The GOI has specifically requested that NOAA have a role in
CTI (REFTEL B).

PROPOSED ACTIVITIES UNDER THE PROGRAM
-------------------------------------

5. (U) Embassy Jakarta sees one or two Fellows focusing on
activities with the GOI on the Ina-TEWS, CTI, and other marine
affairs projects. We have already laid some of the groundwork for
support of the Ina-TEWS in partnership with NOAA and have begun
development of an Ina-TEWS Public Private Partnership with
interested U.S. companies in Indonesia. The ESFP would allow a NOAA
representative to focus full time on cultivating that Partnership.


6. (U) There are several additional potential areas for
collaboration with NOAA. The GOI has specifically requested that
NOAA play a part in the implementation of the CTI, for example. A
Fellow could help us determine details on possible collaboration
with NOAA within our program to support this high profile
initiative. A Fellow could also potentially support USAID's
Fisheries Program, which seeks to work with the fisheries industry
to reduce negative environmental impacts and promote sustainable
business models.

BENEFITS OF PARTICIPATION IN ESFP
---------------------------------

7. (U) We see several potential benefits to recruiting one or two
candidates, preferably from NOAA, under the ESFP:

-- Support for U.S. programs: The U.S. has already expressed
financial and political support for the Ina-TEWS, CTI, and other
marine initiatives such as building sustainable fisheries. NOAA
scientists have the scientific and technical expertise to help us
guide and prioritize that support.

-- Creating a link to other NOAA programs: NOAA's participation in
Ina-TEWS, CTI, or other activities could extend beyond their tenure
in Indonesia and would help us develop the right future role for
NOAA's coral and other related programs.

-- Strengthening U.S.-Indonesian relations: We have already seen
the great cooperation between NOAA and GOI scientific and technical
agencies through the IOTWS. Recruiting one or two NOAA scientists
to support Indonesian initiatives will be well received by our
Indonesian counterparts and will support OES' emphasis on creating
genuine partnerships with scientists in the Muslim world.

-- Setting a Precedent: Participation in this program could serve
as the launch for a regular ESFP program here in Jakarta. We can
build on momentum created by successes under Ina-TEWS or CTI to
attract interested scientists from other agencies to work with our
mission, leveraging the full expertise and intellectual resources of
the U.S. government.

LOGISTICS
---------

8. (U) Embassy Jakarta is prepared to provide logistical support for
up to two prospective Fellows under the ESFP guidelines. We would
provide secure office space on the embassy compound with appropriate
computer, email and internet access. We will provide appropriate
housing in one of our several TDY apartments. The Fellows would
also have access to the Embassy Health Unit (pending appropriate
medical clearances), FPO and CLO. Embassy Jakarta's preferred
timeline is an April/May 2008 arrival, July/August 2008 departure.

HUME

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