Highlands Conservation and Sustainable Natural Resources Management: Enhancing Livelihoods of Indigenous Community in Long Semadoh Naseb of Lun Bawang Highlands in Lawas District, Sarawak.
In Sarawak, the highlands are areas with the elevation between 300m and above. The Murut highlands region which is also popularly known as Lun Bawang highlands lies between 600m to elevations of over 1000m. The highlands are homeland of the Lun Bawang, a minority indigenous peoples groups found in Sarawak who have inhabited it since immemorial times. Hence, known as Lun Bawang highlands. It covers an area of 89,000 hectares with vegetations shift from mixed-dipterocarp forest to montane forest that are rich in natural resources and contains valuable biological resources.

This project is needed and important to promote and implement sustainable development initiates in the highlands of Sarawak, particularly in biodiversity conservation and sustainable natural resources management that would enhance livelihoods of Indigenous community in Long Semadoh Naseb of Lun Bawang Highlands in Lawas District, Sarawak.

The proposed project is a multi-focal project which aims at addressing a community-based conservation and natural resource management system and the sustainable use of the natural resources to support sustainable livelihood through the setting-up of reliable source of renewable energy and irrigation system for the community that will mitigate the contribution towards the impacts on climatic changes.

In Long Semadoh Naseb village, the livelihood of the people is closely linked to the highland natural resources which they have sustainable use over generations. However, in recent years their livelihoods have been threatened with industrial intervention to extract forest resources that cause disruptions in the highlands. There were timber exploitation within the catchments of upper Trusan River area that have caused devastation to the fragile highland ecosystems, mountain cultures and the environment. Although the logging activity have ceased in the area it had caused severe damage to water quality and quantity, loss of biodiversity and vegetative cover, and the atmospheric effects of pollution to the environment. With increases in local population as well as easy access by people outside of the village with logging roads into the area had caused the local resources and wildlife being depleted sharply over the last few years.

The long term solution to stop further degradation of biodiversity in the highlands region is to promote the protection and conservation of Lun Bawang highlands as well as adopting community-based management of natural resources. This will empower the local community with environmental and social responsibility to ensure the conservation of the highland ecosystem and traditional culture. Hence, integrated conservation and resource management plans that acknowledge traditional and indigenous knowledge need to be put in place as an important mechanism towards sustainable resource and biodiversity management.

1) To introduce community based conservation and natural resources management system in the Lun Bawang Highlands region in Sarawak;
2) To support the livelihood activities through sustainable use of natural resources with the setting-up of reliable source of renewable energy and irrigation system towards mitigating climatic changes; and
3) To document lessons learnt and shares good practices in community-based natural resources management for the benefits of the community and other stakeholders.

Project Activities:

Activity 1: Undertake community based mapping and conduct training on natural resource management
1.1 Field survey and site mapping activities of community resource use, forest and watersheds areas carried out, delineated and established at Long Semadoh Naseb village in the Lun Bawang Highlands region
1.2 Training programme on community-based conservation and natural resource management for the members of the community.

Activity 2: Setting-up sustainable livelihood activities through reliable source of renewable energy and water irrigation needs for wet paddy cultivation for the community.
2.1 Building a 10kW micro-hydro system facility as source of renewable energy for Long Semadoh Naseb village

Activity 3: Documentation of lessons learnt and good practices in community-based natural resources management (CBNRM) and produce information materials on the project.
3.1 Preliminary documentation of lessons learnt and good practices in CBNRM
3.2 Produce and dissemination of information materials on the project

The project will have the following outputs:-

1) Community resource use areas at Long Semadoh Naseb village in the Lun Bawang Highlands region are delineated, managed, and appropriate measures are established for its protection.
2) Sustainable livelihood activities for Long Semadoh Naseb village have been supported with the 10kW micro-hydropower system and the irrigation system for wet rice (padi) cultivation in the community, and
3) Lessons learnt and good practices in community-based natural resources management are documented and information materials produced.
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Project Snapshot

SCANE Network (Sarawak Conservation Alliance for Natural Environment)
Area Of Work:
Climate Change Mitigation
Operational Phase:
Phase 5
Grant Amount:
US$ 50,000.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 38,366.00
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 26,003.00
Project Number:
Start Date:
End Date:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Capacity - Building Component
By undertaking this project, the Lun Bawang community intends to address the critical issues pertaining to biodiversity and natural resources management in the Lun Bawang Highlands region. This is the motivational force that got the community to be fully participated in the project. With this project, it is hoped to enhance the preservation of the natural resource and biodiversity through land use zoning and demarcation of watersheds for sustainable use of the highlands. The conservation of biodiversity and forest within their areas would further enhance with the development of sustainable livelihood alternatives and activities through the setting up of sustainable source of renewable energy and water irrigation for wet rice farmings in the community. The project through the devise-planned activities intends to create awareness and educate the local communities on biodiversity conservation and management and sustainable use of the highland resources. The project will also aim at encouraging women participation in the management working committee of the project as well as strengthening the role women play in livelihood activities in terms of socio-economic and income generation aspects.
Notable Community Participation
Project planning has been done in participatory ways through meetings with the Village Chief, Village Development & Security Committee, women group and members of Long Semadoh Naseb village during the planning grant phase. SCANE together with the members of the community have formed a Project Development Committee (PDC) to spearhead the management and execution of project activities. The PDC shall mobilize the villagers to participate in all project component activities by promoting community self-help and participatory work (gotong-royong). The community would also be contributing in term of foods, labour and manpower for the project. In drawing up the project work plan, the farming circle of the community will be taken into account so that the scheduling activity will not be affected and delayed. Majority of the people are wet rice farmers practicing single planting yearly.
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Number of women participated / involved in SGP project 50
Number of indigenous people participated/involved in SGP project 100