Indonesia New Environmental Protection Regime: Environmental Approvals and Management of Toxic and Hazardous Waste under Omnibus Law

Further to the enactment of Law No. 11 of 2020 on Job Creation ("Law 11/2020" or "Omnibus Law"), the Indonesian government issued a new regulation to illuminate changes on the environmental matters under the law, Government Regulation ("GR") No. 22 of 2021 on Environmental Protection and Management ("GR 22/2021") in February 2021.

GR 22/2021 has 534 articles in GR 22/2021 stipulating the following subject matters: (a) Environmental Approval; (b) Water Quality Protection and Management; (c) Air Quality Protection and Management; (d) Marine Quality Protection and Management; (e) Environmental Damage Control; (f) Toxic and Hazardous Waste Management and Non-Toxic and Hazardous Waste Management; (g) Guarantee Fund for the Restoration of Environmental functions: (h) Environmental Information System; (i) Guidance and Supervision; and (j) Imposition of Administrative Sanctions (Art. 2 of GR 22/2021).

In this article, we will focus our analysis on the: (i) management and applicable environmental approvals/ persetujuan lingkungan with respect to B3; and (ii) environmental documents to set up business activities under GR 22/2021.

Legal Framework: For the purpose of this article, we refer to the following laws and regulations:

  1. Law no. 32 of 2009 on Environmental Protection and Management as lastly amended by Law No. 11/2020 ("Amended Law 32/2009");
  2. GR 22/2021; and
  3. GR No. 27 of 2012 on Environmental Permit ("GR 27/2012").

Statutory Definitions of Toxic and Hazardous Waste/ Bahan Berbahaya dan Beracun ("B3") and B3 Waste Management under Amended Law 32/2009 provides the following definitions of B3 and B3 Waste Management:

Art. 1 (21) of Amended Law 32/2009 defines B3 as follows:

"... substances, energies, and/or other components which may pollute, and/or directly or indirectly destroy, and/or endanger the environment, health, as well as continuation of life of humans and other creatures because of their characteristics, concentration, and/or quantity."

Furthermore, B3 waste management is defined as "activities that include reduction, storage, collection, transportation, utilization, processing, and/or stockpiling" of B3 waste (Art. 1 (23) of Law 32/2009).

Obligation to Manage B3 Waste: Indonesia's prevailing laws and regulations require any manufacturer that produces B3 waste to directly manage their own B3 waste, or indirectly manage it through a third party (Art. 59 (1) and (3) of Amended Law 32/2009).

Storage and Labelling of B3 Waste: The Indonesian government has provided a series of procedures to determine the types of B3 Wastes, including requiring the relevant manufacturers to label their B3 products (Art. 292 (2) of GR 22/2021).

The labeling shall consist of, at least, information about the producer of the waste, their address, also the B3 waste's time of packaging, quantity, and characteristics to help the laboratory process in predicting leaching potentials (Art. 285 (4) of GR 22/2021).

Environmental Management and Monitoring Programs/ Upaya Pengelolaan Lingkungan hidup dan Upaya Pemantauan Lingkungan Hidup ("UKL-UPL"): The Indonesian government also requires the processing of B3 Waste Management through UKL-UPL, in an effort to manage and monitor the environmental protection. UKL-UPL are the standard prerequisite in the decision-making process, and they are contained in the business licenses or approvals issued by the central or local governments (Art. 1 Point 6 of GR 22/2021).

Environmental Approvals: Pursuant to Art. 4 of GR 22/2021, any plan of business and/or activity that has any negative impact on the environment should first obtain these Environmental Approvals:

  1. Environment Impact Analysis/ Analisis Mengenai Dampak Lingkungan ("AMDAL"); and
  2. UKL-UPL; or
  3. Statement of Environmental Management and Monitoring Undertaking/ Surat Pernyataan Kesanggupan Pengelolaan dan Pemantauan Lingkungan Hidup ("SPPL") as a substitution of UKL-UPL document if the business has no significant impact or effect on the environment.

    (together, referred to as "Environmental Approvals")

Necessary Documentation to Obtain Environmental Approvals: Please see below, the list of the necessary documentation to obtain the approvals under GR22/2021:





Business Type

AMDAL is mandatory for any type of business plans and/or activities that may have a significant impact on the environment, in which:

a.       its scale is mandatory for AMDAL; and/or

b.        it is located within and/or directly adjacent to a protected area. (Art. 5 (2) of GR 22/2021).

UKL-UPL is mandatory for any type of business activities that:

a.       has no significant impact on the environment;

b.        is located outside and/or not directly adjacent to a protected area; and

c.       is exempted from AMDAL obligation (Art. 6 (2) of GR 22/2021).

SPPL is mandatory for any type of business plans and/or activities that:

a.       has no significant impact on the environment;

b.       is a micro-or -small enterprise having no significant Impact on the environment; and/or

c.       is exempted from UKL-UPL obligation.

(Art. 7 (2) of GR 22/2021).

Required documents

Business actors must prepare AMDAL documents that consist of the:

a.       Terms of Reference Form/ Formulir Kerangka Acuan ("KA");

b.       Environmental Impact Analysis/ Analisis Dampak Lingkungan

c.       RKL-RPL (Art. 26 of GR 22/2021).

(together, referred to as "AMDAL Documents")


SPPL form

Authorities that process and/or issue Environmental Approvals

AMDAL Documents will be reviewed by the Environmental Feasibility Assessment Team/ Tim Kelayakan Uji Lingkungan ("Assessment Team") (Art. 1 (22) of GR 22/2021).

Reviewed and issued by the authorized Minister, governor, or regent/mayor (Art. 57 (1) and (2) of GR 22/2021).

Reviewed and issued by the authorized Minister, governor, or regent/mayor (Art. 66 (4) of GR 22/2021).

Type of documents issued

The relevant Assessment Team will issue a recommendation, which will be considered by the Minister of Forestry and Environment before issuing the Environmental Eligibility or Non-eligibility Decree (Art. 79 of GR 22/2021)

UKL-UPL successful approval document (Art. 13 (4) (a) of GR 22/2021).

SPPL successful approval document (Art. 13 (4) (a) of GR 22/2021).



Note: From the application until the issuance of the Environmental Approvals

A maximum of 180 (one hundred eighty) working days (Art. 42 of GR 22/2021).

A maximum of 14 (fourteen) working days (Art. 61-62 of GR 22/2021).

A maximum of 14 (fourteen) working days (Art. 61-62 of GR 22/2021).

Environmental Approval Validity Period

All Environmental Approvals shall remain valid as long as the business and/or activity takes place and no changes are made (Art. 49 (6) (g) (3) of GR 22/2021).

The above Comparative Guide was prepared by Marshall S. Situmorang (Partner) and Audria Putri (Senior Associate)

Disclaimer: The information herein is of general nature and should not be treated as legal advice, nor shall it be relied upon by any party for any circumstance. Specific legal advice should be sought by interested parties to address their particular circumstances.