Insights From Indonesia: Protecting Our Coral Reefs

By Antha Williams, Head of Environmental Programs, Bloomberg Philanthropies
Jan 29, 2018 3:55 PM ET

Originally posted on

Our oceans program, like all of our work at Bloomberg Philanthropies, aims to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. So it’s good news that the United Nations International Coral Reef Initiative has declared 2018 the International Year of the Reef. Coral reefs are home to one in every four fish in the ocean, and are a critical backbone of ocean ecosystems. Unfortunately, climate change threatens to destroy 90 percent of reefs in the next three decades. And as the demand for fish continues to grow, overfishing and destructive practices, like bottom-trawling and using bombs and cyanide for fishing, are damaging coral reefs.

At Bloomberg Philanthropies, our Vibrant Oceans Initiative is working to replenish fish populations and create a more sustainable and fruitful environment for all fishers. As one of our partners on the initiative, Rare works to protect the environment and public health through community-led conservation. While our partnership focuses on the Philippines and Brazil, Rare also works on small-scale fisheries and coral habitat protection in Indonesia, sharing lessons learned across countries and accelerating coastal fisheries reform.

We recently visited the Rare team in Indonesia and got a firsthand view of their work in the capital city Jakarta, as well as in fish-dependent cities and remote islands.

To read the takeaways of their inspiring work, visit