Make it green   Putera Hasudungan, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Sun, 06/05/2011 7:00 AM

Inspiration to do something good may come from anywhere and at any time. In Rudyanto Linggar’s case, it’s during traffic jams.

On his way home, Rudyanto realized that he was always stuck in traffic jams. Looking around, he realized most of the cars only had one person inside.

An idea popped up — carpooling.

The move would make someone, who usually drives alone and pays for the entire costs — fuel and toll charges, could spend less while helping reduce congestion and pollution.

He then collaborated with his fiancée Sylvia Setiadarmo, now his wife, to realize the idea at the time when the country was hit by a fuel price hike back in 2005.

They set up, where the web design was taken care of by a parent-in-law, and promoted the website to mailing lists where they are listed as members.

“The investment isn’t big, only for the web hosting,” Rudy says. “It’s definitely not as expensive as setting up a Transjakarta system or railway.”

Day-to-day operation is handled by the couple’s close relatives, and slowly but surely, the number of registered users increased.

Since it was founded on Sept. 28, 2005, registered users have reached more than 36,000 people, where 90 percent live in Jakarta’s outskirts: from Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi.

Out of the registered users, some 13,000 have cars and are looking for carpool friends.

The couple is one of many who have done something for the environment. Others adopt green lifestyles and work directly in dealing with environment problems.

For youngsters, who are grouped in Gropesh — which stands for Gerakan Orang Muda Peduli Sampah (Youth Movement on Garbage), piles of garbage stole their attention.

The group members, aged between 18 and 35, show they care by making garbage their friends.

Some may find garbage disgusting and dirty but not them. The group members find garbage as blessing and turn the priest’s saying — “taruh sampah, jadikan berkah” (place garbage, make it a blessing) — as their slogan.

“Garbage is not an enemy. It’s a friend that should be given more concern. We think that we can get many blessings from garbage,” Gropesh leader Deasy Christina says.

The blessings, she says, may come in the form of money or a healthier environment.

In their line of work, the group launched different activities — from gathering garbage from an event, becoming moderators for a waste segregation campaign, processing inorganic garbage to becoming advisers and campaigners in green programs.

Each month, they make various curios — from fish knickknacks made from detergent wrap, butterflies from old magazines and web coasters from copy paper case.

The group raised concern on people’s poor habits of dumping trash anywhere.

Deasy says this habit can be stopped, starting small which may lead to bigger things.

In its campaign, Gropesh started on young people, hoping they could transfer their habits to their children in the future.

“Perhaps, it’s difficult for older people [to change] because it has become a habit,” Deasy says.

Other green volunteers, the Jakarta Green Monster, focus their work on the biodiversity issue, conducting different activities — from monitoring environment quality, especially in northern coastal Jakarta, to sharing knowledge with students.

In their work, they monitor animals, plants and environmental conditions in certain areas each month, such as at the green open space around the National Monument (Monas) and the Muara Angke Wildlife Reserve where they monitor the number of birds and more.

They would also accompany elementary school students wanting to directly learn more about the environment.

The group’s research and monitoring coordinator, Ady Kristanto, said the students would be given reading material and taken to, for instance, observe the plants, animals and water conditions.

“The students learn about birds and mammals or mangrove plants there. They would also learn about the garbage problem and water condition,” he says.

Observation is not the only activity. Students participating in the group’s green tour would also be asked to draw something that they found interesting, present their findings and join a question-and-answer session.

On any other day, the Green Monster activists would join Car Free Day where they distribute stickers and posters.

“Sometimes, on Car Free Day, we also monitor birds in Sudirman and Thamrin areas. We are not only cycling around or playing futsal in the middle of the street, we also monitor if cars affected birds,” said Adi.

He said the JGM also worked with Jakarta Birdwatcher Society (JBS) and Green Map Indonesia, an organization that creates green maps.

The latest green map, set for launch on June 19, featuring open green spaces in Jakarta, and places to see birds.

With many options around, what can we do for our environment?

Green Communities

• Gerakan Orang Muda Peduli Sampah (Gropesh)
Youth Movement on Garbage
Website (blog):
Facebook: Gropesh Jakarta
Twitter: @gropesh

• Nebeng (Carpool) Community
Website: -

• Greeneration Indonesia
Jl. Kanayakan D-35, Bandung 40135

• Green Map Indonesia

• World Wildlife Fund
Jl. Mega Kuningan A8, A-1 unit
Facebook: WWF-Indonesia
Twitter: @WWF_Indonesia

• Jakarta Green Monster
Jl. Harsono RM no. 1 Ragunan – Jakarta
Facebook: Jakarta Green Monster
Mailing List:

• Jakarta Green Office Community
Facebook: Komunitas Green Office

• The Climate Project Indonesia
Facebook: The Climate Project Indonesia
Twitter: @tcpindo

• Inconvenient Youth
Facebook: Inconvenient Youth
Twitter: @IYIndonesia

• Teens Go Green Jakarta
Website (Blog):
Mailing List:
Facebook: Teens Go Green Jakarta

• Yayasan Kehati (Biodiversity Foundation)
Jl. Bangka VIII No. 3B PelaMampang Jakarta Selatan

• Yayasan Peduli Hutan Lestari (Indonesian Rainforest Movement)
Jl. Setia Budi Selatan Kav.16-17, Jakarta 12920 Indonesia

• Warga Hijau (Green Citizen)

• Jakarta Birdwatcher’s Society
Jl. KH Dewantara Komplek Depkes Blok D3 No. 13
Ciputat, Tanggerang Selatan, Banten 15413
Phone : 08176586743

Sumber : The Jakarta Post

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