Raja Ampat Mining

Written by on April 8, 2012 in Papua, Raja Ampat Islands with 0 Comments

Raja Ampat Mining

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Coral sea paradise faces ruin from mining Tom Allard July 2, 2011 ONE of Australia’s richest men, Clive Palmer, is buying nickel laterite ore for his Yabulu refinery from an Indonesian company that is defying a ban and mining in Raja Ampat, the world’s most ecologically diverse marine environment. An investigation by the Herald has discovered that as well as threatening the environment that is home to 75 per cent of the world’s coral species, the supplier undercompensates landowners, has allegedly paid bribes for its licences and created deep rifts in the traditional communities of Raja Ampat. Conservationists and activists have fought hard to have Raja Ampat, in West Papua province, protected but the mine on the island of Manuran where Queensland Nickel gets its nickel, PT Anugerah Surya Pratama, remains open. Advertisement: Story continues below Click for more photos The beauty of Raja Ampat Wayag Island is one of the islands within the Raja Ampat district in the province of West Papua. The island is known for its beautiful atolls and amazing underwater life covering a total area of 155,000 hectares. And its sister company continues to work at another disputed concession on the island of Kawe, despite a court order to desist. Obtaining nickel laterite involves strip-mining the soil, leaving the steep hills bare. When heavy rains come, villagers near Manuran say the sea ”turns red” from the runoff. The environmental impact is devastating as heavy soil smothers the coral. West Papua is one of two provinces in the restive Papua region where the Indonesian government has granted special autonomy to boost development in the face of persistent sentiment for independence. But allegations of corruption by local officials, a heavy security presence and the perception that Papua’s vast trove of natural resources is being plundered by outside interests have undermined the deal. PT ASP and its sister company PT Anugerah Surya Indotama, which operates on Kawe, both bribed the district head for their permits, according to police documents. Landowners receive less than 0.3 per cent of estimated revenue from the Manuran mine and the military has been deployed to protect the commercial interests of the supplier and, say local villagers, intimidate them. After promising interviews, Queensland Nickel and Yos Hendri, the director of PT ASP and PT ASI, withdrew their offers and declined to answer detailed emailed questions.

FRIDAY, 23 SEPTEMBER 2011 14:27 WRITTEN BY HATMAN BINTANG Raja Ampat The indonesiatoday.com – Ministry of energy and mineral resources (MEMR) will impose strong measures to ban any mining activities in Raja Ampat Natural Conservation Area, West Papua. Director General of Mineral and Coal Thamrin Sihite said the Ministry of Energy & Mineral Resources urges local administration to stop any mining operations in Raja Ampat, Detik.com. According to Mr. Sihite, the ministry will closely supervise all mining activities in remote areas. The ministry claimed they have mining inspectors which supervise whether the activities in the area equipped with ligitimate licenses or not. He also added that West Papuan Governor Abraham Octavianus Atuturi has previously rejected any mining activities in Raja Ampat, especially the illegal ones. The province has no definitive governor at the moment, as Octavianus’ period ended on July 2011. Presently, Marthen L. Rumadas, acts as Governor ad interim, pending decisions on election dispute. There are about 15 companies with mining activities, especially nickel commodities, within the area. Most of them have reportedly left the area, but two of them, PT Anugerah Surya Pratama (ASP) and PT Anugrah Surya Indotama (ASI), both owned by Queensland Nickel Ltd, are still progressing their activities. (bintang@theindonesiatoday.com)

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