On November 8, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Indonesian government launched a scoping study to map the pathway for the country’s future national capital, Nusantara, to identify, track, neutralise, and reduce carbon emissions.

The assistance was announced at an event at COP27 and is aligned with Indonesia’s commitment toward its nationally determined contributions in line with the Paris Agreement.

ADB will provide technical assistance in the form of a study for the preparation of a comprehensive regionally and locally determined contribution for Nusantara, the first of its kind at the subnational level in Indonesia. A voluntary local review to analyse the localisation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will also be conducted.

ADB Vice-President for East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Ahmed M. Saeed said, “Active participation of subnational governments, which are at the forefront of national policy implementation, will be critical for countries to achieve their commitments under the Paris Agreement.”

Nusantara National Capital Authority Chairman Bambang Susantono said, “This study is another step toward our goal of making Nusantara the world’s first sustainable forest national capital and the first carbon-neutral city in Indonesia by 2045.”

The study will identify key activities to help Nusantara meet its net-zero commitment, including protecting and restoring the future capital’s land and forested areas.

The authority will also prioritise the rehabilitation and protection of areas with significant conservation value, such as wildlife and biodiversity corridors, and water catchment zones.

For its urban area, Nusantara’s development will prioritise low-carbon materials for construction, maximising energy coming from renewable sources, and access to public transportation.

The technical assistance will be managed by ADB and financed by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It is expected to be finalised by June 2023.

Nusantara National Capital Authority was established in March 2022 and is a ministerial-level agency that reports directly to the Indonesian president. The authority is in charge of planning and constructing the new capital, and is responsible for overseeing the government’s transition to the new city and eventually becoming its manager.