Cities in Action: Balikpapan, the Urban-LEDS Model City

Balikpapan is a seaport city on the east coast of the island of Borneo, in the Indonesian province of East Kalimantan. Based on the results of Balikpapan’s first GHG inventory, the Urban-LEDS Model City has set targets to reduce community emissions by 15.6% by 2020 from 2010 levels. The following Low-Emissions Development (LED) activities are helping the City to achieve its goals:

  • Protection and Expansion of Protected Forest Area in Balikpapan City will tap into the significant potential of local carbon sequestration from the city’s forest and open green spaces. In addition, the City recognizes the importance of agroforestry, offering environmental and forestry education in two schools, the Protected-Forest School and the Mangrove School.
  • Energy-Efficient Lighting is a primary LEDS focus, from scaling up energy efficient street lighting to lighting retrofit activities.
  • A Waste-to-Energy landfill methane capture facility will support Balikpapan’s waste management while generating valuable energy resources.
  • Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Forum is a group of companies in Balikpapan City that has committed to dedicate part of their budget to support social and environmental issues in the city which is coordinated directly by the Government of Balikpapan.

Balikpapan displays some unique examples of development in an area characterized by forests. Some of the lessons from the city’s low-emissions development strategy are:

  • Community and education-based forest conservation programs. In order to preserve its forested area, Balikpapan developed some eco-based schools with a specific additional environment curriculum. Currently, at least two schools have adopted this curriculum.
  • A CSR Forum for sustainability. As the headquarters for various large scale industries, Balikpapan invites local companies to a CSR Forum, requiring them to give back to the community in the form of social and environmental programs that support sustainable development.

For more information, please visit the City of Balikpapan website.


Balikpapan is an Urban-LEDS city. To learn more about the Urban-LEDS project, please visit the website.

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