Riau Ecosystem Restoration (RER) Head of Operations, Brad Sanders, spoke about his experiences and involvement in the RER ecosystem restoration project during the Responsible Business Forum on Sustainable Development 2017 held in Singapore last year.

RBF 2017, organized by Global Initiatives, was meant to introduce a more integrated approach to implementing the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), provide solutions for accelerating action and tools for measuring performance and impact.

Businesses, governments, non-government organisations, UN agencies, investors and international experts presented case studies that showcased varying levels of progress in SDGs implementation. Innovation in financing SDGs was high on the RBF 2017 agenda.

At the event, Brad also spoke about the RER program on a podcast which was recorded by Global Initiatives.

Besides discussing RER’s four-pronged ‘Protect, Assess, Restore, Manage’ management approach towards the forests, Brad also highlighted the importance of community engagement in ensuring the continuity of the program.

"One of the most important things that APRIL and RER are demonstrating through this project is that the model that we are advocating for ecosystem restoration is the production-protection model. The two go both hand-in-hand - production and protection - and sustainable finances are the key to making it work," Brad said.

He added: "The key to ecosystem restoration is having a successful business - a business that has experience in managing land, is professional, and has the depth of skillsets and knowledge of the legal requirements for managing land, especially in Indonesia. APRIL has this."

Listen to the podcast here: