Indonesian Botanical Gardens Foundation Launches Jaga Bhumi Movement

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Jakarta (Greeners) – Indonesian Botanical Garden Foundation launched Jaga Bhumi (Protect Earth), a movement to encourage people to aware and participate in protecting the country’s rich biodiversity.

Megawati Soekarno Putri, founder and chief of the foundation, said that protecting environment was a fixed price for mankind’s existence in the world.

She added that the title of megabiodiversity bearing by Indonesia has been questioned by the world, hence, it is time for Indonesians to active participating in restoring the country’s rich biodiversity.

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“It saddened me to see the condition of our botanical gardens. Why is that Indonesia which posses the largest germplasm richness but unable to develop itself? That is why I intend to develop botanical gardens by preserving their endemic plants, especially legal issues, stealing and germplasm has been extraordinary. I have requested to patent our plants,” said Megawati at the launch in YKRI House, in Jakarta, on Wednesday (24/5).

Furthermore, she said that the effort would be difficult if people don’t understand its own biodiversity. She cited tengkawang tree used for cosmetics and other uses but it would take long time to grow. People, she added, didn’t understand the benefits of the tree instead exploited it to the core.

“This is also man’s doing. People needed to be educated to love plants and biodiversity,” she said hoping for Indonesians to be more aware and socialize on the importance of preserving plants and protecting biodiversity.

She said she won’t stop to protect the earth for next generation.

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Deputy chief of YKRI, Sonny Keraf, said that Jaga Bhumi movement was focusing as education platform to increase awareness on the importance of plants. In addition, the movement also to introduce botanical gardens as ideal platform to save germplasm of Indonesia and develop image of botanical gardens in Indonesia.

“So, the main movement of Jaga Bhumi is to develop new image on the existence of botanical gardens. Meanwhile, for long term, is to develop Mangrove Botanical Garden development which covers 200 hectares in Surabaya to be the first Mangrove Botanical Garden in the world,” she said.

Reports by Danny Kosasih