After 18 months of planning, postponement, disappointment and delay, the Murung Raya Expedition team have finally been granted permission to research the Upper Joloi Headwaters in Central Kalimantan
It is with enormous pleasure, relief, and gratitude to our sponsors, partners, and everyone who has been involved in helping us launch this project, that I can announce that we have had our Indonesian research permits approved, and that the Murung Raya Expedition will be going ahead as planned this winter.
We started out on this journey in April 2009. I put up some posters looking for a small team of talented and adventurous people to join me on an expedition to somewhere remote and unexplored. 400 applicants, countless interviews and a selection weekend on Dartmoor later we were the ‘FX-pedition Borneo’ team. We had big plans to combine science, media and education projects around a 12 week expedition into the tropical rainforest on Central Kalimantan, Borneo.
Something we were doing was resonating with people in the expedition and conservation fields. We had incredible success with grants and sponsorship, attracting backers such the Royal Geographical Society, ZSL, Explorers Club, Panasonic, and Paramo, to name a small few.
We were due to leave in July and spend the summer exploring and documenting an area of the vast Heart of Borneo rainforest, looking for rare and endangered species, and evidence that this is a part of the world worth protecting. The red tape of the Indonesian permit application process got in our way at the last minute, and so we had to delay the expedition until the winter. We lost a bit of money, and some of our team, but we held on to all of our sponsors who have been fantastic in their support and encouragement.
We used the delay to become the Heart of Borneo Rainforest Foundation, and establish ourselves as a charity (registration pending) to formalise the long term aims we always had. Thanks to the continued hard work and the support of our in-country advisors, Steve Oliver and Rupert Ridgeway, we have established a long-term partnership with the Indonesian Institute of Science (LIPI) to support our research.
Thanks again to everyone who has supported us so far. We have just over a month to go and lots of money still to raise and kit to source. If you would like to contribute, either as an individual or a business, please visit our Support Us page to find out how you can help, and what you can get in return.