Pesisir Selatan District, Sumatera Barat Province, consists of 15 subdistricts with a hilly landscape and 18 rivers flowing within its boundary. Its area is dominated by forest areas which amount to 83,91% of the total area while the rest of the area is formed of rice fields, plantations, and residential area. This indicates that community areas are located in potential location for sustainable development. IV Jurai Subdistrict in Pesisir Selatan District is among the locations with the largest designated forest areas of 37,83%. These areas are designated as a nagari (village) forest while at the same time; companies have converted parts of this forest into an area for natural resource management.
Global Forest Watch Data 2014 indicates that tree cover loss is as much as 15% of the total area of Pesisir Selatan. Tree Cover also takes place within the protected forest. Protected forest in Pesisir Selatan covers an area of 284.434 hectares or 47% of Pesisir Selatan’s total area. However, it is indicated that the rate of tree cover loss is decreasing, indicating that there is an effort to fight illegal logging in the protected forest of Pesisir Selatan. Forest area serves as the home for rich vegetation which provides food supply, maintains the air condition and serves as water absoprtion area.
Pesisir Selatan District is potential for the farming and plantation of palm oil and rubber tree. Pesisir Selatan is also the largest producer of seafood in West Sumatera, with a total production of 26.000 tonnes a year, due to its close proximity with the sea. Its potential in mining sector is also big as mineral resources namely coal, gold, lead, andesite, granite, and quartz sand are abundant. However, in practice, the management of gold mining in Nagari Tambang has been taken over by big companies holding Permit for Mining Activity.
The abundant resources in Pesisir Selatan necessitate good management of local wisdom in which women and men are equally involved in the process. The division of labour between the two needs to result in the balance of social life and ecology.