Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol 25, Issue 3 2019; Page No.(1386-1393)

THE DEVELOPMENT OF ENVIRONMENTALISM IN POSTCOLONIAL JAVA

Nawiyanto and Wasino

Abstract

In the middle of the twentieth century an alarming ecological decline was observed as a result of large scale economic and social changes on the island of Java, Indonesia. The growing awareness about the ecological crisis became a major cause to actively seek restoration and protect the landscape. Drawing on historical sources, this paper seeks to elaborate on the development of environmentalism in postcolonial Java. It explores the emergence of the conservationist environmentalism that emphasized the protection of nature and the emergence of popular environmentalism. It is argued that postcolonial environmentalism of Java demonstrated both historical continuity and change from its colonial roots. The more prominent environmentalism movement from the 1970s compared with the early decades was due to the growing number of groups with strong concern about the environment and the creation of a participatory space provided by the government for non-governmental organisations. The environmental groups played an important role in articulating environmental concerns and by bringing new issues to the public’s attention in a search for answers and solutions for the problems.

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