Indonesia has always been a place of inspiration for sustainable living. This is because the cultural context of the 'peoples' who pay respect to the intrinsic value of nature is as much an extrinsic factor that impacts their livelihoods.
When it comes to the green buildings sector, Indonesia it is incrementally growing with ‘green building’ awareness and tangible outputs. This is achieved through the efforts of local government initiatives in public buildings, expertise by international bodies and local industry groups like the Green Business Council of Indonesia, the provincial chapters of the Indonesia Institute of Architects, the Green Building Professional Association and others.
I visited Indonesia between 29 January and 15 February 2020. The purpose of the visit was two-fold: i) to meet local experts and discuss GBPN’s mission on decarbonisation programs for the building sector in Indonesia; and ii) finalise and sign a MoU for the purpose of a grant agreement with Green Building Council Indonesia.
It was humbling to meet many enthusiastic and purpose-driven people who invest energy, spirit and heart in the decarbonisation sector even in the absence of a clear mandate on green building codes in some provinces. It was evident from local authorities to industry representatives that the spirit of humanity for climate action was very much prevalent in Indonesia.
Some of the highlights of the trip were:
- Meeting the Rector and executive secretariat team at University Gadjah Mada in Yogyakarta to discuss policy development work and curriculum design for green building tertiary education.
- Meeting with the Local City Planning Agency in Bandung and learning about the impactful work on public sector building applying green building tools like EDGE and working collaboratively with the International Finance Corporation.
- Meeting with the Education Agency of Jakarta and their aspirations to build schools based on green building concepts and use the school as a place for a 'green education' for the school children and local community.
- Meeting with Trisakti University in Jakarta and their plans to build green residential student housing facilities.
- Meeting with Udaya University in Bali and discussing ways in which waste is managed from buildings for purposes of biomass renewable energy fed to the grid.
- Meeting with the Architect Institute of Jakarta and learning about their leadership in training their industry members on the green building approaches.
- Meeting with the Green Building Professional Association and learning about the need for more education and strategic approaches to meet global green building standards.
My visit highlighted the importance of building a community of local experts with local authorities, industry peak bodies, the tertiary sector and other global international bodies to form an integral part of our bottom-up approach to policy planning, policy adoption and policy implementation in Indonesia.
I look forward to working with the dynamic organisations that I’ve developed professional relationships with for long-standing work on green buildings development and culture in Indonesia