Southeast Asia Peat Network (SEA-PEAT)

31/10/2001

Southeast Asia Peat Network (SEA-PEAT)

SEA-PEAT is short for Southeast Asia Peat Network. It is an information network that links up individuals and groups working on peat related areas i.e. management, conservation, research and sustainable use. It utilizes e-mail and a web site on the Internet to exchange and disseminate information among network members.

Objectives of SEA-PEAT

SEA-PEAT is the information exchange component of the Southeast Asia Peatland Action Plan and Management Initiative that is currently being developed by the Global Environment Centre (GEC). The Initiative’s objective is to develop a comprehensive action plan for the conservation and sustainable use of peatlands in Southeast Asia and initiate demonstration projects at key sites. SEA-PEAT was set up with the objective of establishing a strong network for information exchange and sharing between the participants in order to achieve the objectives of the Initiative.

The Global Environment Centre acts as a coordination unit for SEA-PEAT activities. GEC moderates postings to SEA-PEAT e-list, sets up and maintain the website for SEA-PEAT.

Networking Benefits of SEA-PEAT

Individual and organization information will be listed in SEA-PEAT web directory of organizations and individuals working on peat issues

Members will receive information on peat related issues, announcements of events and meetings through electronic e-mails.

Members can disseminate information about their activities and research on peat issues to a wide network of peat related agencies and groups in Southeast Asia and other parts of the world.

Members can utilize the network as a forum to request for advice and information from network members.

Membership

SEA-PEAT is open to all individuals and organizations, especially those who are conducting activities, research and work related to the conservation and sustainable use of peatlands and peat resources in the Southeast Asia region.

For more information or to sign up for this network, please contact:

Mr. Faizal Parish
Mr. David Lee
Global Environment Centre.
7A, Jalan 19/29,
46300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor,
MALAYSIA.

Tel: +60 3 7957 2007
Fax: +603 7957 7003
Email: david@genet.po.my


-Background Information-

Southeast Asia Peatland Action Plan and Management Initiative

Development and rising population pressure is causing severe degradation to peatland in Southeast Asia. This is likely to continue in coming years unless prompt action is taken to safeguard the 35-40 million ha of tropical peatland area in Southeast Asia, which makes up about 60% of the world’s tropical peatlands and roughly one tenth of the entire extent of global peatland resource.

Since Ramsar COP7 in May 1999, the Global Environment Centre has been working, in support of the decision made at COP7 to promote the development of a Southeast Asia Peatland Action Plan and Management Initiative to promote and enhance the conservation and sustainable use of peatland in Southeast Asia. Peatland play an important role in the global climate issue. There are numerous opportunities for synergy and cross-linking initiatives between these environment conventions. The initiative will also provide a framework for linkages with activities associated with related conventions.

The initiative aims to develop a framework that would include an action plan looking into key issues and areas of concern in an integrated manner. It has been proposed that the plan look into the following issues:

  • Conservation of biological diversity and protection of key sites
  • Prevention of Peat Swamp Forests Fires
  • Ecological Restoration of peatland
  • Better fire control system for peatland
  • Role of peatland in water resource management
  • Sustainable Forest Management
  • Socio-economic uses of peatland
  • Protection of carbon stores and ecological restoration to enhance carbon sequestration
  • Link between climate change and peatland management

Potential Participants

Governments, research institutions and agencies of the Southeast Asia region, as well as local and international NGOs. Other potential participants may include local or community organizations.

Development of Initiative

The development phase of the action plan is expected to take 12-18 months starting in August 2001. Information sharing, would readily lead to benefits such as more exchange of opinions and ideas to manage and conserve peatlands in the region.

The first phase involved establishment of the SEA-Peat Network, raising fund for the activities and identification of demonstration sites. Initial funding for developing the initiative has been allocated by the European Union through a grant from the ASEAN Regional Centre for Biodiversity Conservation (ARCBC) to GEC. Support for demonstration projects is expected from CIDA and GEF.

The initiative is currently in its first phase, where activities include developing partnership with appropriate institutions and establishment of a directory of agencies and their focal areas. Other activities include documentation of potential demonstration sites and existing on-giong projects and the development/experience on on-going projects. The third phase will involve implementation of the Action Plan and establishment of demonstration projects.

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