Cablegate: Noaa Administrator's Indonesia Visit Drives Climate,

DE RUEHJA #0027/01 0110708
R 110708Z JAN 10




E.O. 12598: N/A
SUBJECT: NOAA Administrator's Indonesia Visit Drives Climate,
Science, Ocean Priorities

JAKARTA 00000027 001.2 OF 004

1. (SBU) Summary: NOAA Administrator Dr. Jane Lubchenco's first
visit to Indonesia advanced Administration priorities on climate
change, science and technology, food security, and ocean policy.
She emphasized President Obama's commitment to a deeper partnership
with Indonesia, and previewed Science Envoy Bruce Alberts' upcoming
visit as evidence of this commitment. Dr. Lubchenco received
enthusiastic high-level Indonesian support for the planned ocean
exploration expedition by the NOAA ship OKEANOS EXPLORER with the
Indonesian ship BARUNA JAYA IV. This joint ocean exploration
expedition planned for June 2010, she noted, reflects a true
partnership of equals and highlights the potential for enhanced
bilateral collaboration across the board. GOI interlocutors viewed
Dr. Lubchenco's visit as the first in a series of high-level visits
that will build toward a POTUS visit in 2010. Media coverage was
extensive and positive. End Summary.


2. (U) Dr. Lubchenco, Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and
Atmosphere and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrator (NOAA)
Administrator, paid her first official visit to Indonesia January
3-5. She started with a January 3 site visit - to a tuna monitoring
station - and an informal lunch in Bali with Indonesian Marine
Affairs and Fisheries Minister Fadel Muhammad. The lunch dialog
highlighted Minister Fadel's interest in a new ocean policy for
Indonesia, his commitment to the Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) and
interest in sustainable fisheries and seafood and aquaculture as
integral to food security. This was followed by a series of
meetings and events in Jakarta on January 4-5 with senior officials,
scientists, students and civil society representatives.

Ocean Policy and Ocean Exploration Priorities for Fadel
--------------------------------------------- ---------

3. (U) In their formal meeting, Minister Fadel Muhammad stated his
strong support for the U.S.-Indonesia ocean exploration partnership
and appreciation for other existing collaborative efforts, including
USG support for CTI and ocean/climate observations. He and Dr.
Lubchenco committed to deepen the positive relationship between NOAA
and the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF). Both were
enthusiastic about opportunities for marine scientific
collaboration, recognizing its importance for sustainably managing
marine resources, ensuring food security, and understanding climate
change's effect on the ocean. Dr. Lubchenco highlighted coral
reefs, ocean acidification, ocean current circulation and upwelling
as "perfect" areas for collaborative research.

4. (U) Dr. Lubchenco welcomed the news that the Government of
Indonesia (GOI) had cleared the research permit for the OKEANOS
EXPLORER's voyage. She and Muhammad recognized the importance of
the voyage of NOAA's OKEANOS EXPLORER this June to kick off
long-term scientific collaboration in ocean exploration. Dr.
Lubchenco stressed that public-private partnerships and education
are critical to maximizing mutual benefit from scientific
collaboration. Dr. Lubchenco highlighted the upcoming visit to
Indonesia by Presidential Science Envoy Dr. Bruce Alberts as an
important opportunity to connect U.S. and Indonesian scientific

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment could Bolster GOI Climate Change
Adaptation Strategy
--------------------------------------------- ----

5. (U) The Coordinating Ministry for People's Welfare focuses on
achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and views its top
priorities of climate change, disaster relief and prevention
capacity, education and health through the MDG lens. Dr. Lubchenco
explained to Dr. Indroyono Soesilo, Secretary to the Minister, the
work of the United Nations' Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA), a
one-time scientific study addressing how changes in the environment
impact human well-being. The MEA complements the IPCC process.
Soesilo noted that such a study would help Indonesian leadership
make better choices regarding resource mobilization and multi-sector
approaches to addressing environmental challenges. He asked for
follow-up meetings in the U.S. with NOAA in February, and suggested
jointly hosting an MEA seminar in Bali in the future. The concepts

JAKARTA 00000027 002.2 OF 004

and scientific information in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment
( Dr. Lubchenco described were of keen interest to
other ministries as well.

Aboard NOAA's Ocean Exploration Partner Vessel
--------------------------------------------- -

6. (U) Dr. Lubchenco's tour of the Indonesian research vessel BARUNA
JAYA IV successfully built momentum for the June joint voyage. The
ship is one of four Agency for Assessment and Application of
Technology ocean research vessels. It will accompany and conduct
research alongside the OKEANOS EXPLORER during the June ocean
exploration expedition. Dr. Lubchenco's visit mirrored an
Indonesian visit to the OKEANOS EXPLORER she hosted in the U.S. last
July. The ship visit was covered extensively by Indonesian press
including an all-news format station (Metro TV) and the
largest-circulation daily newspaper (Kompas).

"Avoid the Unmanageable and Manage the Unavoidable"
--------------------------------------------- ------

7. (U) In a scientific and policy lecture and discussion hosted by
the Indonesian Association of Oceanologists, Dr. Lubchenco spoke
with over 150 students and scientists about climate change and the
ocean. She highlighted changes being seen in acidity, temperature,
and currents, noting that these changes set the stage for non-linear
disruptions to ocean processes, with serious consequences to human
well-being. Dr. Lubchenco emphasized that even without climate
change impacts, overfishing, habitat destruction, and pollution have
severely compromised ocean health. Mitigation should focus on these
controllable stressors while adapting to inevitable climate change
impacts. The lecture emphasized many proactive steps that can be
taken and was well-received by the audience, which included senior
GOI officials and the press.

At Dinner: "Did the U.S. Do Enough in Copenhagen?"
--------------------------------------------- -----

8. (SBU) At a dinner hosted in honor of Dr. Lubchenco by Ambassador
Hume, leading Indonesian science policymakers and advisors voiced
their disappointment over what they considered inadequate U.S.
climate change leadership in Copenhagen. Dr. Lubchenco highlighted
the many significant efforts in clean energy investment, fuel
standards, promotion of clean energy, and legislative initiatives
that the Obama Administration achieved during its first 10 months.
She stressed that the most accurate way to describe the Copenhagen
outcome is that the Accord lays a good foundation for future
progress. She noted U.S. leadership behind the scenes was
invaluable in managing COP-15's volatile political dynamics in a
fashion that was not obvious to many observers. Ambassador Hume
added that the view of U.S. "failure" is unjustified, considering
that all but four of the many countries with obligations under the
Kyoto Protocol have failed to meet Kyoto's binding targets-and
without consequences.

Ocean Exploration and Dr. Alberts: Symbols for Ministry of Science
and Technology
--------------------------------------------- ----------

9. (SBU) Minister Suharna Surapranata stated his appreciation for
the ocean exploration partnership and his support for increased S&T
cooperation with the United States. He also expressed his hope that
cooperation on capacity building and technology transfer could be
expanded. Dr. Lubchenco reiterated the U.S. commitment to advancing
the scientific partnership, pointing to the joint ocean exploration
expedition and Dr. Alberts' upcoming visit. The Indonesians
expressed excitement about Dr. Alberts, and indicated they would
invite him to speak at both the Indonesian Academy of Sciences and
at the Presidential Palace. Surapranata and his staff were
optimistic the remaining Ministry of Defense approval for the
OKEANOS EXPLORER's voyage would be issued shortly.

Vice President Boediono Endorses S&T Partnerships
--------------------------------------------- ----

10. (SBU) Vice President Boediono was supportive of the OKEANOS
EXPLORER visit and the broader ocean exploration partnership. He

JAKARTA 00000027 003.2 OF 004

also expressed his interest in meeting Science Envoy Dr. Alberts.
Dr. Lubchenco reemphasized President Obama's commitment to
partnering with Indonesia in the field of science and technology.
In keeping with the spirit of scientific exploration, she noted, all
data collected during the expedition would be freely shared. Vice
President Boediono agreed that closer science and technology
cooperation would benefit both countries. Dr. Lubchenco informed
Boediono that Dr. Alberts' focus would be to promote scientific
capacity building and scientific partnerships, and advance science
education at all levels. She also noted that items that could be
advanced ahead of the POTUS visit included the Science and
Technology Agreement and a second Tropical Forest Conservation Act.
Boediono replied that "we support these and I know the Ambassador is
working hard on these with us."

"A Healthy Environment Enables a Healthy Economy"
--------------------------------------------- ----

11. (U) Deputy Chief of Mission Ted Osius hosted a lunch for NGO
partners of the Coral Triangle Initiative. Participants also
included a private sector corporate social responsibility
representative. An active discussion focused on the need for envoys
like Dr. Lubchenco to stress to Indonesia leaders that a healthy
economy depends on a healthy environment. They also identified
potential opportunities for the private sector to promote ocean
issues - including ocean exploration - with Indonesian school
children and the public. Discussions highlighted the productive
partnerships between NGOs, local governments and national government
in the Coral Triangle as models for expansion. The importance of
science education, local leadership, scientific capacity building
and sustained engagement and support were highlighted.

Climate Change Adaptation One Tree at a Time

12. (U) The mangrove restoration event at a site on Jakarta's
northern shoreline drew extensive media coverage, with Dr. Lubchenco
and students up to their elbows and knees in mud, planting almost
1000 seedlings. The event - themed "Indonesia and the U.S:
combating climate change one tree at a time" - was organized by a
public-private consortium focused on mangrove restoration. Dr.
Lubchenco highlighted the importance of local conservation efforts
and developing science capacity in the Muslim world.

Climate as an Element of "Total Defense"

13. (SBU) Dr. Lubchenco also briefed Defense Minister Purnomo
Yusgiantoro on the OKEANOS EXPLORER's planned visit. She
underscored President Obama's commitment to scientific partnerships
based on the principles of equality and mutual benefit. The OKEANOS
EXPLORER visit would demonstrate the benefits of United
States-Indonesia scientific cooperation, she noted. She explained
that the ship's communication technology will be able to send
high-definition underwater video in real time from a Remotely
Operated Vehicle to shore; connecting the ship and its discoveries
live with audiences in Indonesia and around the world. Yusgiantoro
agreed the OKEANOS EXPLORER visit would further scientific and
technological cooperation, and committed to providing the necessary
approvals from the Defense Ministry. He also named a senior
Indonesian Navy point of contact for NOAA to facilitate the

14. (SBU) During the meeting, Dr. Lubchenco praised President
Yudhoyono's leadership on climate change and stressed the importance
of oceans in understanding and adapting to the phenomenon. From his
perspective as the former Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources,
Yusgiantoro noted that President Yudhoyono (SBY) had committed
Indonesia to a 26 percent reduction in emissions or a 41 percent
reduction with external assistance. SBY, he explained, planned to
press other tropical forest countries (the F-11) to make similar
commitments. SBY believed that climate change could affect
Indonesia's national security and must be addressed as part of
"total defense" - with a holistic focus on forests, oceans and
people combined. Dr. Lubchenco agreed that climate change was a key
national security issue, and underscored the importance of United
States-Indonesia cooperation on the matter.

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15. (U) Under Secretary Lubchenco cleared this message.


© Scoop Media

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