Pro-environmental behavior among Indonesian oil palm smallholders: Understanding perceptions, intentions and actions

The rapid transformation of tropical lowland rainforest in Indonesia, into mono-cultural oil palm plantations, has led to a severe loss of biodiversity and ecosystem functions. Thus, the implementation of mechanisms that balance ecology and economic trade-offs is necessary. This research investigates the environmental preferences and adoption of tree planting of oil palm cultivators in Jambi Province, through the implementation of a randomized control trial (RCT). First we conducted a baseline survey in 36 villages to collect socio-demographic, tree planting, topography, subjective expectations, environmental concern and social capital information to identify what are the factors that influences farmers´ decision to plant trees. Second, we carried out two interventions in 24 villages. One intervention involved an informational campaign on ecological functions of enrichment planting in oil palm plantation, while in the other intervention, in addition to the information campaign; we distributed seedlings of native trees among farmers. The data collect it from a second round will allow us to identify a change on farmers´ adoption of tree planting and how their perception towards the environment was shaped through these interventions.