Foreign investment

Down to Earth No.82, September 2009

At least three Australian mining exploration companies have released information recently about their activities in Papua, raising concerns over the potential for more serious human rights and environmental impacts for the local population and their livelihoods.

Down to Earth No.82, September 2009

More deaths at Freeport-Rio Tinto mine in Papua

More violence near the Freeport-Rio Tinto copper and gold mine in West Papua resulted in three deaths - two Freeport employees and a police officer - in July. Police arrested seven people: two of them worked at the company's Grasberg mine. More shots were fired at a bus carrying the mine's employees in August, with one incident leaving five people injured.

DTE 82, September 2009

The giant Tangguh gas project in Bintuni Bay, West Papua, has now started exporting LNG, amid continuing concerns about social and environmental impacts.


After many delays, the Tangguh project, operated by UK oil multinational, BP, has begun production, with the first shipments of Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) delivered to China and South Korea in July 2009. There is much at stake for many people in this operation, not least for the local communities who will be regularly seeing tanker ships ferrying LNG away from their shores. They and the wider Papuan community have been sold this project on promises of development and improved welfare. However, as income starts to flow from this project, concerns about increased militarisation, threats to livelihoods and resource rights persist.

Down to Earth No.80-81, June 2009

In January 2009 DTE marked its 20th birthday by inviting friends to a gathering in Bogor. On the same occasion we launched an Indonesian language compilation of climate change articles taken from recent DTE newsletters. The following review of our activities was published as the introduction to that book.

Down to Earth No.80-81, June 2009

In April the Indonesian people elected their paliamentary representatives. Partai Demokrat, the party of incumbent president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY), secured the strongest position with around 20% of the seats. On 8th July are the elections for president and vice-president, with three pairs of candidates in the running: SBY and Boediono, Megawati and Prabowo, and Jusuf Kalla and Wiranto. What are the prospects for ecological justice?

Down to Earth No.80-81, June 2009

Indonesia's forestry department has extended a 2009 deadline for pulp companies to source their wood supply from tree plantations only. Now companies can continue pulping natural forests until 2014.

Down to Earth No.80-81, June 2009

A report from Rio Tinto's AGM in London, April 2009, attended by DTE.


This hasn't been a very good year for Rio Tinto. The UK-based mining multinational is facing growing criticism, not just from established critics of the company's operations in places like Grasberg, the huge copper and gold mine in West Papua.