The Long Run welcomes Cempedak

Although only a few hours by road and boat from Singapore, 12km off the south-east coast of Bintan, Cempedak feels a world away. This carefully protected pocket of the South China Sea is home to pristine hard and soft coral reefs where cuttlefish, seahorses, octopus, and stingrays thrive. The 42-acre island, covered by virgin coastal forest, supports 112 animal species and 50 bird species, including the globally near-threatened Nicobar pigeon and locally-scarce Oriental pied hornbill. The island’s shallow tidal lagoon has become a favoured feeding site for the smooth otter, and the Sunda pangolin (one of the world’s most poached animals) has been spotted in the forest.

Drawing on the conservation-led philosophy of sister island, Nikoi, Cempedak adheres to strict sustainable principles. The aim is not only to protect the environment but to restore it. To reverse the degradation of local waters, Cempedak is working towards establishing a no-fishing zone around the island and employing local fishers to protect it. The replanting of native trees and shrubs (including the indigenous Cempedak tree) has helped renew the virgin forest and beaches and mangroves are cleaned daily.

Guests can’t help but get on board with Cempedak’s environmentally-sensitive ethos. Locally-crafted bamboo, alang alang and reclaimed rubberwood structures blend into the island’s native foliage. Natural airflow removes the need for air-conditioning, rainwater is harvested, and a filtration plant at Cempedak’s mainland base provides drinking water (in refillable glass bottles). Where possible, produce is home-made or grown to reduce the island’s carbon footprint and packaging needs. Alongside supporting local businesses, providing exceptional employment opportunities, and helping to set up eco-minded micro-businesses, a proportion of Cempedak’s profits go to The Island Foundation — a partner charity with a focus on education for local, remote communities.

We’re delighted to welcome Cempedak as a Fellow Member of The Long Run and look forward to being part of their journey.

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