一读乔科维、安妮斯和朋友的空气污染诉讼
Photo illustration (Source: Antara)

JAKARTA - On July 4, 2019, 32 Indonesians, including Melanie Soebono, Elisa Sutanudjaja, Tubagus Soleh Ahmadi, Nur Hidayati, Adhito Harinugroho, Asfinawati, and dozens of others sued a number of authorities for human rights violations. A series of authorities are considered negligent in fulfilling the right to a good and healthy environment.

Represented by a legal advisor, Arif Maulana, the community group sued President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) as Defendant I. Apart from Jokowi, there are Defendants II, namely Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya Bakar; Defendant III Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian; Defendant IV Minister of Health Budi Gunadi Sadikin; and Defendant V, namely the Governor of DKI Jakarta Anies Baswedan; Banten Governor Wahidin Halim; and West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil.

On September 16, the Panel of Judges of the Central Jakarta District Court decided that the state had committed an unlawful act that resulted in environmental damage and pollution. "To try, grant the plaintiff's claim in part. To declare that Defendant I, Defendant II, Defendant III, Defendant IV, and Defendant V have committed acts against the law," said Chief Justice Saifuddin Zuhri in his decision.

Citing a VOI article entitled Jokowi, Siti Nurbaya, Tito Karnavian, Budi Gunadi and Anies Baswedan Sentenced Against the Law on Air Pollution, the defendants were deemed to have violated Law (UU) Number 32 of 2009 concerning Environmental Protection and Management and the provisions of all laws and regulations. - related invitations.

"Punished Defendant I (President Joko Widodo) to establish a national ambient air quality standard that is sufficient to protect human health, the environment and ecosystems, including the health of sensitive populations based on scientific and technological developments," said Judge Saifuddin.

President Joko Widodo (Instagram/@jokowi)

Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian was appointed to supervise and guide the performance of Defendant V, namely the Governor of DKI Jakarta Anies Baswedan in controlling air pollution.

"Punished Defendant IV (Minister of Health Budi Gunadi Sadikin) to calculate the reduction in health impacts due to air pollution in DKI Jakarta Province which needs to be achieved as the basis for consideration of Defendant V (Governor of DKI Jakarta Anies Baswedan) in formulating strategies and controlling air pollution," said the judge. Saifuddin.

Regarding the decision, Governor Anies stated that his party would not challenge the decision with an appeal. Anies added that he was ready to carry out the court's decision for a better Jakarta air.

"Today, the Central Jakarta District Court has granted the Capital Coalition's claim regarding air pollution. The DKI Jakarta Provincial Government has decided not to appeal and is ready to carry out the court's decision for better Jakarta air," Anies said as quoted from his official Twitter account on September 16, 2021.

Governor Anies Baswedan (Instagram/@aniesbaswedan)

Meanwhile, Jokowi's side admitted that they are still reviewing the results of the decision. Special Staff to the Minister of State Secretary, Faldo Maldini, said that the study was carried out by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK).

"We are waiting for a review from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, after which we will discuss various recommendation points, to determine what the next steps should be," Faldo told VOI.

Faldo explained that the government needed time to decide on a follow-up stance on the verdict of the Central Jakarta District Court. Hopefully they will be able to take the best steps in the future.

"Hopefully this available time can be used to choose the best option. This is a legal route, of course legal arguments need to be prepared, we certainly hope to take the best option," he said.

Pollution in Jakarta, Indonesia

Photo illustration (Niklas Liniger/Unsplash)

In 2018, WHO said that 9 out of 10 people in the world breathe air that contains high levels of pollutants. The data also reveals an alarming death toll of 7 million people every year caused by air and household pollution.

“Air pollution threatens us all, but the poorest and most marginalized people bear the brunt of it,” said Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

"It is unacceptable that more than 3 billion people – most of them women and children – are still breathing deadly fumes every day from the use of stoves and polluting fuels in their homes. If we do not take urgent action against air pollution, we will not will never come close to achieving sustainable development,” he added.

Exposure to fine particulate matter in polluted air can penetrate deep into the lungs and cardiovascular system, causing diseases including stroke, heart disease, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and respiratory infections, including pneumonia.

More than 90 percent of air pollution-related deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, mainly in Asia and Africa, followed by low- and middle-income countries in the Eastern Mediterranean region, Europe, and the Americas.

Indonesia is in the top 10 countries with the worst air quality in the world, according to IQ Air. During October 2015, nearly 5,000 fires occurred simultaneously in all forests and peatlands in Indonesia, which contributed to the poor air quality in Indonesia. In just one day, about 80 million metric tons of carbon dioxide are produced. Another factor that adds to pollution in Indonesia is transportation and energy production.

Meanwhile, the very poor air quality in Jakarta is caused by power generation and transportation emissions, household emissions, the construction industry, and road dust. All of this happens every day. In 2020, Anies said that 5.5 million cases of disease in Jakarta were caused by air pollution.

Jakarta Pollution (Source: Antara)

"Experts say 5.5 million cases of disease are caused by air pollution per year in Jakarta. That's almost 11 cases every minute and the health costs due to this (air pollution) are around Rp. 6.8 trillion," Anies said in a webinar held on Wednesday 23 September 2020, citing Kompas.

The DKI Jakarta Provincial Government is collaborating with the Bloomberg Philanthropies and Vital Strategies organizations to improve air quality in Jakarta. On the occasion, Anies explained that air pollution control in Jakarta will be carried out in three aspects, namely science, policy implementation, and communication.

"The Jakarta Partnership and Bloomberg Philanthropies will focus on improving air quality in Jakarta in the next two years," said Anies.

Anies also explained that the collaboration will focus on improving air quality in Jakarta for the next 2 years. The document 'Towards Jakarta's Clean Air' has also been signed which highlights efforts to reduce air pollution and a series of policy recommendations.

"This document is a formal agreement that will remind us of the main pillars in the context of controlling air pollution in 3 aspects, namely science, policy, and communication," said Anies.

A study from the journal Transboundary Air Pollution in the Jakarta, Banten, and West Java Provinces conducted air quality monitoring using tools belonging to the US Embassy in Jakarta. Monitoring shows that Jakarta only had 40 days with good air quality in 2017 mostly in January, November and December.

While in 2018, Jakarta only had 25 days with good air quality and 101 days with poor air quality. In 2019, the number of unhealthy days increased to 172 days, more than the previous year.

In the dry season to be precise from May to October, most often have days with unhealthy air quality. The November to March monsoon rains provided some respite but overall air quality in 2018 and 2019 suggests that most of the time in those years, PM2.5 levels are at unhealthy levels for a sensitive group.

Air quality in Jakarta improved slightly when the Large-Scale Social Restriction (PSBB) was implemented in early 2020. Study attached in the journal The relationship between air pollutants and COVID-19 cases and large-scale social restriction's impact on the air quality in Jakarta, Indonesia by Muhammad Rendanaa and Leily Nurul Komariah pointed out that the PSBB which was held from April to June 2020 resulted in a sharp decrease in the amount of Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) by 18.34 percent.

The decrease in NO2 can be attributed to the decrease in city traffic density in Jakarta during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the PM10 and PM2.5 air pollution indexes have decreased by 15.74 percent and 9.48 percent, respectively. For your information, PM10 is an air particle that is smaller than 10 microns while PM2.5 is a fine particle in the air whose size is 2.5 micron or smaller. Both are the main types of pollutants that degrade air quality.

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