Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Govt may allow mining of protected forests

PERSONAL NOTE: Another example of how the Government of Indonesia exploits even so-called protected forests - it's happened before. This is the same country and same government the EC, World Bank and British government give our money to, to protect the very same forests. These bureaucrats are either corrupt or incompetent, possibly both.

Govt may allow mining of protected forests

Adianto P. Simamora , The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Wed, 11/25/2009

The government has revealed plans to amend the law on natural resource conservation, which could pave the way for mining companies to exploit the country’s rich mineral resources in protected forests.

Director general for forest protection and natural conservation at the Forestry Ministry, Daruri, said that many mineral resources, including coal or geothermal sources were located in conservation forests.

“We are now reviewing articles prohibiting mining activities in conservation forests,” Daruri told a workshop Wednesday.

The 1990 Natural Resources Conservation Law prohibits the mining sector from exploiting mineral resources in conservation areas.

Meanwhile, the 1999 Forest Law stipulates that non-forest activities can only be conducted in both protected and production forests.

Daruri, however, immediately warned environmental activists not to politicize the plans.
“We will only change the law if there is guarantee that mining activities will not damage conservation forests,” he said.

“But we need a law as an umbrella for conserving the forest.”

He said that about 70 percent of geothermal sources were located below conservation forests.