A clean Brantas river in Indonesia


Aksi Brantas: Research-based action for a clean and healthy river

Dutch-Indonesian cooperation in the Brantas River

AksiBrantas is an initiative of Makara, the Indonesian environmental NGO Ecoton, the Delft University of Technology and the Dutch consultancy and engineering company Tauw in collaboration with three local authorities: the river authority BBWS-Brantas, the state-owned water supply company Perum Jasa Tirta-1 and the provincial department of Environment and Forestry.

AksiBrantas is a unique Dutch-Indonesian partnership: Indonesian environmental activists join forces with authorities and mobilize community groups to stop household waste ending up in the river. Dutch and Indonesian experts research water quality with the latest technologies. Dutch engineers support small and medium enterprises along the river to decrease pollutants in their waste water.

Makara acts as a liaison between the Indonesian NGO and community groups and the Dutch project partners, particularly in the areas of environment, community engagement and gender equality. Our role is to support the NGO and community groups to develop the following products:

• A community participation model for integrated water quality management in the Brantas River Basin

• Community projects aimed at women empowerment, improving water quality, and preserving biodiversity

• Communication and outreach to international target groups about community-based initiatives

AksiBrantas: how it started

Since 2000, industrial pollution has been greatly reduced as a result of collaboration between environmental groups, the Governor and Ministry of the Environment. Still, it remains challenging to measure and monitor the wide range of pollutants in the river. Plastic waste from households and companies that dissolves in the river into microplastics is an example of increasing concern. It is unclear what the pollution means for the health and income of local communities living along the river. Combined efforts by government, communities, industry and researchers are needed to gain more insight into river pollution and to take action.

AksiBrantas works to improve and support:

• the availability of water quality data – through harmonized and upgraded monitoring systems

• gender-sensitive community participation – through strengthened institutions and inspirational community actions for river health

• clean technologies for small riverside enterprises (SMEs)

Sharing and learning from each other is our philosophy. Together we build a strong community-based program to protect future life in and along the Brantas River.

Want to know more about the partnership? Visit the  aksibrantas project website!