Cablegate: Food Security in Indonesia - It's About Fish
DE RUEHJA #1473/01 2461019
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 031019Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3237
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS COLL
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEHRC/USDA FAS WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 3073
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 5974
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 3651
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 5404
UNCLAS JAKARTA 001473
DEPT FOR COS, F, OES AND EAP
COMMERCE FOR NOAA
USAID FOR ANE, EGAT
BANGKOK FOR RDM/A
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAGR EAID KGHG SENV PGOV ID
SUBJECT: Food Security in Indonesia - It's About Fish
1. Summary: Post proposes the establishment of an Indonesia-U.S.
Center for Sustainable Ocean Fisheries. This joint research
institute would explore and study waters that house the world's
highest ocean biodiversity. The resulting science discoveries would
help drive Indonesia and regional ocean fisheries policies onto a
sustainable path for ocean food resources and the marine ecosystem.
They would provide applied science solutions for local communities
and commercial ports in Indonesia through networks of education
extension services. These understudied waters are critical not only
to the 120 million people living in the maritime nations of the
Coral Triangle, but also for Americans and global consumers of
pelagic fish species. For example, 90 percent of the world's tuna
catch originates in this region. The establishment of such an
institute would address both food security and climate change
adaptation in the largest majority Muslim country in advance of
climate change talks in Copenhagen in December. End Summary.
2. The Indonesia-U.S. Center for Sustainable Ocean Fisheries will
allow American and Indonesian scientists to collaborate on research
that will yield the knowledge and techniques needed to safeguard the
region's marine ecosystems - while feeding the millions that depend
on the ocean for sustenance.
The Center would support:
-- Marine ecosystem monitoring
-- Institutionalized fisheries stock assessment programs
-- Development and analysis of marine resources management
approaches and options
-- Delivery of policies and advice to marine resource managers and
3. The center will obtain critical knowledge about the marine
ecosystem that will improve the management and use of Indonesia's
"Amazon of the Sea." It will create opportunities for U.S.
institutions and researchers to expand research in marine science
and coastal ecosystems in an area that has been virtually closed to
U.S. scientists. The core partnerships featured in this center
include U.S. universities and research institutions, such as the
Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the University of Washington or
others, and U.S. science agencies, like NOAA, working together with
Indonesian research institutions, agencies, and education networks.
The center will provide reliable information for fisheries managers
and help build a culture of basing policy decisions on sound
science. It will promote interactions among U.S. and Indonesian
institutions, scientists, and marine resource managers.
4. The center will: 1) extend our partnership to science cooperation
as articulated in President Obama's Cairo Speech; 2) address the
inseparable linkages between climate change impacts on
coastal/marine-dependent communities and food security, outlined in
Secretary Clinton's delivered remarks at the World Ocean Conference
(WOC) in Indonesia in May 2009; 3) build on Indonesia's demonstrated
commitment to sustainable ocean fisheries and climate change
adaptation in the WOC and President Yudhoyono's Coral Triangle
Initiative (CTI); 4) build on our commitment as the largest
bilateral partner of the CTI; and 5) Provide scientific complement
to USAID Indonesia's substantial Marine Resources Program investment
over the next five years.
5. In Indonesia, food security depends on healthy marine resources.
Over 65 percent of Indonesia's protein supply comes from fisheries
products. Indonesia is home to the world's most diverse marine
ecosystems. It is at the heart of the region that produces nearly
90 percent of the world's tuna catch. The Coral Triangle is home to
the world's largest stocks of commercially-important tuna species.
Approximately thirty four million Indonesians depend on this
biodiversity for their livelihoods. But overfishing, habitat
destruction, and the impacts of climate change threaten the
archipelago's food security. These factors, combined with lack of
basic data about coastal and pelagic fisheries on which Indonesians
depend undermine Indonesia's efforts to manage its fisheries
sustainably and adapt to climate change.
7. The Indonesia-U.S. Center for Sustainable Ocean Fisheries would
be a partnership among Indonesian and U.S. science agencies and
academic institutions. A network of existing "sea partnership"
institutions would deliver new knowledge and techniques directly to
the agencies and organizations that need it through local
universities and field agents. The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine
Affairs and Fisheries Research Officials are enthusiastic about
becoming a partner, if not the leader of the institute. Founding
partners in Indonesia could be the, Ministry of Marine Affairs and
Fisheries, the University of Indonesia, and Bogor Agricultural
8. The Indonesia-U.S. Center for Sustainable Ocean Fisheries will
have its greatest impact if it reinforces and complements existing
investments and addresses the most urgent issues in fisheries
management. This center could become one of the first science
cooperation activities under the new U.S.-Indonesia Science and
Technology Agreement currently in the final stages of negotiations.