Java, Madura & Bali



Down to Earth No. 72 March 2007

The arrival of heavy monsoon rains in Java has made life even more miserable for the thousands of people affected by the East Java mudflow disaster (see DTE 71). The Sidoardjo mudflow, referred to in Indonesian as 'Lumpur Sidoardjo', or simply 'Lusi', which first erupted in May 2006, continues unabated. It has displaced thousands of people, yet, despite overwhelming evidence of criminal negligence, the government has not taken legal action over the disaster.

Down to Earth No. 71, November 2006

Thousands of people have been forced from their homes since May 29th, when hot mud started spurting from the ground near a gas exploration well in Sidoardjo, East Java. Over the following weeks, villages were submerged, farmland was ruined, businesses and schools closed and livelihoods lost, as the mud inundated the surrounding area. The government has done little to help, although the mud continues to flow, perhaps because the company responsible was owned by a senior member of the government.

Down to Earth No. 71, November 2006

The following account is by a member of DTE's staff who visited Sidoardjo in October.

Disasters can become tourist attractions and that's what has happened at the Sidoardjo mudflow in East Java.

The hot mud, which has now inundated the villages of Siring, Jatirejo, Renolenongo, Kedungbendo, Mindi, Kedungcangkring, Besuki and Pejarakan, has been turned into a new source of livelihood by some local people.

Down to Earth No. 70, August 2006

The following report from Yogyakarta, by Ima Susilowati, starts with a personal account of the events early on May 27th 2006, then moves on to a critique of the government's emergency response from an NGO worker's perspective.

The thundering filling my ears early on May 27th is still fresh in my memory. The noise made me think of the dustbin lorry which regularly collects the rubbish.

Down to Earth No 68  February 2006

Ruslani Ruslan has depended on fishing for most of his life. He has produced dried fish and has been a wholesaler of fresh and dried fish in North Jakarta for nearly forty years. He is now head of a fishing co-operative and the NGO Expindo, which supports fisherfolk and coastal communities.

Down to Earth No 66  August 2005

The following is the translation of an urgent action appeal from the Indonesian human rights NGO ELSAM. It is another case in which the state forestry company, Perhutani, is associated with brutality against farmers. Previous cases have been well-documented - see for example KaKKaPP letter, DTE 60.

On the morning of 7th April, 7 villagers from Krenceng (East Java) were detained by police from Kediri.

Down to Earth No 63  November 2004

By Ulfa Hidayati, RMI (The Indonesian Institute for Forest and Environment). (Abridged translation by DTE)

The capitalist economy has dominated ecological, social and cultural aspects of local peoples' lives in the Halimun ecosystem which covers part of Bogor, Sukabumi and Lebak districts, West Java.