YKAN, Pact and Chevron launch mangrove restoration and sustainable aquaculture program in Berau, Indonesia

September 5, 2023
Shrimp farmers in Borneo, Indonesia, where a new partnership is working to restore vital mangrove forests. Credit: Brian Clark/Pact

Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN), Pact and Chevron today announced the launch of the Mangrove Sahabat Tambak Lestari (MESTI) program with the support of the Berau District Government. With Chevron’s support, MESTI will be implemented over three years in the villages of, Pegat Batumbuk, Tabalar Muara, and Suaran in Berau, Indonesia.

Shrimp farming is the main source of livelihood in these communities which are also home to some of the largest spans of mangroves in Indonesia. The mangroves serve as habitat for a wide array of unique wildlife. The usual form of shrimp farming results in the clearing of mangrove forests to serve as shrimp ponds. Clearing the mangroves lowers the water quality resulting in lower shrimp yields, causing farmers to clear more land. The MESTI program aims to reverse this trend.

YKAN has developed a method of sustainable shrimp farming called the SECURE model, in part by redesigning ponds into a smaller size and combining them with mangrove restoration to produce the same and sometimes larger shrimp yields for farmers. “It’s a win-win solution,” explained YKAN Ocean Program Director, Muhammad Ilman. “Farmers use less resources but get the same result, and mangroves in the big ponds can regrow naturally.”

Pact is working with shrimp farmers to grow their business capacity, including productivity and profitability, through training, skills development, and access to finance. “To scale up the SECURE model of sustainable shrimp farming in the Berau District, the MESTI program will ensure the economic incentives are there for shrimp farmers to make the transition. We will support shrimp farmers to improve their business sustainability and access new markets for their products. In this way, the SECURE model will not only be the best choice in terms of environmental benefits but also for social and economic reasons,” added Ayi Farida, Pact Country Director for Indonesia.

Pact’s work to improve the livelihoods of farmers is crucial, says Ilman. "We will be much more effective when we help farmers with their aquaculture, and they help us with the mangrove restoration."  

Pact and YKAN are also collaborating to identify and build new small business opportunities, such as eco-tourism.

“The Berau District Government commends the MESTI program for striving to protect mangroves and strenghthen the livelihood of the coastal communities,” noted the Berau District Leader, Sri Juniarsih Mas. “It is our collective responsibility to preserve and protect mangroves.”

Chevron Indonesia Country Manager, Wahyu Budiarto, agreed. “Chevron recognizes the importance of protecting and conserving a region’s biodiversity. Since 2018, Chevron and a consortium of industry partners have supported the five-year program of Mangrove Ecosystem Restoration Alliance (MERA) program at the Muara Angke Wildlife Reserve in Jakarta, Indonesia, led by YKAN.”We are proud to work with YKAN and Pact to help support the mangroves in the Berau District.”

About YKAN
Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) is a non-profit organization which was established in Indonesia in 2014. With the mission to protect lands and waters on which all life depends, YKAN provides innovative solutions for realizing harmony between nature and humans, through effective management, non-confrontational approaches, and building collaborative partnerships with all stakeholders for a sustainable Indonesia. By collaborating with relevant stakeholders including government, corporations, communities, YKAN will strengthen conservation mission in Indonesia. YKAN is committed to a science-based, nonpartisan approach that combines sustainable economic development, local wisdom, and community-based conservation initiatives.

About Pact
Pact is an international nonprofit that works in nearly 40 countries building solutions for human development that are evidence-based, data-driven and owned by the communities we serve. Founded in 1971, Pact works with partners to build resilience, improve accountability, and strengthen knowledge and skills for sustainable social impact. Learn more at

About Chevron
Chevron is one of the world’s leading integrated energy companies. As a company of problem solvers, we look to the future of energy with optimism. We provide affordable, reliable, and ever-cleaner energy to people in the Eurasia Pacific region that is essential to achieving a more prosperous and sustainable world. We invest in community programs that help advance the UN’s sustainable development goals and strive to empower people to meet their full potential. 

Media Contacts:

Maria Adityasari
Communications Specialist YKAN

Molly Derrick
Director, Integrated Communications, Pact

Cam Van Ast
Chevron External Affairs Advisor
+61 9216 446