"The campaign to speed up the rehabilitation of mangroves must be implemented. We should have firm determination. This is for the public`s interest," the minister remarked at the launch of the campaign at the National Library.
The government already has a legal basis for expediting mangrove rehabilitation, Pandjaitan noted, calling for the regional administrations` involvement in preserving the country`s natural resources.
"I called on regional heads. You have played an important role. I believe that within five to seven years, we can complete (the mangrove rehabilitation). We can do it if we remain united for the sake of our future generation," he added.
Meanwhile, Agung Kuswandono, the ministry`s Deputy for Natural Resource Coordination, remarked that Indonesia has 23 percent of the world`s mangroves, but 52 percent of it are in critical condition.
Kuswandono noted that issues related to mangroves had become a global concern for their crucial role in the environment.
"Mangroves could help to mitigate the impacts of tsunami and sea abrasion, encourage development of the blue economy, lead to the establishment of eco-friendly green ports, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and achieve the sustainable development goals (SDGs)," he stated.
The government has called on local governments to identify critical mangrove land and take further measures to rehabilitate them.
"We will monitor and propose it as one criteria for evaluation of their performance," he remarked.
The government will also encourage the campaign to replant mangroves by state enterprises, non-governmental organizations, private sectors, and the public.
Reporting by Ade Irma Junida
Editing by Sri Hariyati