Sanctuary in Aceh, Indonesia

Elephant bathing in a river. Creative Commons: Dedi Yansyah, 2014.

This project will support Goldman Prize winner and conservationist Rudi Putra’s efforts to create a wildlife sanctuary in the Leuser Ecosystem of Aceh on the island of Sumatra, the last place where orangutans, rhinos, elephants, and tigers, and the elusive clouded leopard still roam together in the wild.

In response to mounting threats to the Leuser Ecosystem, two grass-roots NGOs in Aceh, HAkA and FKL, have come together to save the largest remaining tract of lowland forest in Sumatra. Leading their project, Rudi plans to secure a core area of approximately of 200,000 hectares that hosts incredible biodiversity of plant and animal species.

Though the outside pressures may seem insurmountable, after careful planning and lengthy negotiations Rudi has been able convince the provincial and district forestry agencies to pledge an initial agreement to set aside most of this 200,000 hectare area as a sanctuary.

LDF will support Rudi’s plan to secure the forest by constructing barriers, training wildlife patrols and rangers, and recording and reporting any ongoing habitat destruction. If successful, the plan is to extend the sanctuary further to the south, north, and west to cover a total area of approximately 600,000 hectares of wildlife habitat within the 2.6 million hectare Leuser Ecosystem.

Through collaborative partnerships, we support innovative projects that protect vulnerable wildlife from extinction, while restoring balance to threatened ecosystems and communities. Our work is divided into six main program areas – Wildlands Conservation, Oceans Conservation, Climate Change, Indigenous Rights, Transforming California, and Innovative Solutions.

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