Coastal communities and fisheries

Down to Earth No 63  November 2004

The latest and most comprehensive government-sponsored study into pollution at Newmont's gold mine in North Sulawesi, has linked the US-based company's mining activities to ill-health in the local community and declining fish stocks in Buyat Bay.

Down to Earth No 62   August 2004

Community holds Newmont to account
Villagers from Buyat Bay, North Sulawesi have lodged complaints with the police over the devastating health impacts of Newmont Minahasa Raya's gold mine. At least 30 people are believed to have died as a result of the heavy metal pollution caused by the mine, which dumps tailings on the sea-bed.

Down to Earth No 61  May 2004

Local people, supported by an indigenous organisation, disrupted the coal-mining operations of Australian-owned PT Bahari Cakrawala Sebuku in February, to protest against the impacts of mining on the island of Sebuku, off South Kalimantan.

The February protest, which involved local people supported by the South Kalimantan Indigenous People's Union (PERMADA) and local NGOs, blocked a mining road at the Sebuku coal mine.

Down to Earth No. 61, May 2004

The government of President Megawati has caved in to pressure from international mining companies to allow open-pit mining in protected forests, paving the way for yet more forest destruction and marginalisation of forest-dependent communities.

The go-ahead for mining in protected forests came on March 11, with a new Government Regulation in Lieu of Law (Perpu) No. 1/2004 on Changes to Law No. 41 of 1999 on Forestry. The regulation adds two extra paragraphs (83A and 83B) to the 1999 law.

Down to Earth No 60  February 2004

The death of a local man at the hands of police guards employed by an Australian mining company is a grim reminder that mining companies, backed by repressive government policies, put profits before people.

One man was shot and another almost beaten to death when members of Indonesia's special forces police (Brimob) broke up a protest by customary landowners at Nusa Halmahera Minerals' Toguraci gold mining area, on Halmahera Island, North Maluku, in early January.

Down to Earth No 58  August 2003

Shrimp exports from developing countries - including Indonesia - are bringing foreign exchange earnings to exporter governments and profits to entrepreneurs. But the real price is being paid by communities whose coastal resources are wrecked both by commercial shrimp farms and shrimp trawling.

Forestry Minister Prakosa warned in May this year against the total destruction of mangrove forests in Indonesia. He said that strong determination and commitment was required to prevent further damage.

Down to Earth No 57  May 2003

What lessons will be learned from the shooting dead of two local fishermen at the Komodo National Park, managed by US-based conservation organisation, The Nature Conservancy?

On the night of November 9th 2002, security personnel at the Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara province, approached a small group of boats suspected of illegal fishing activities.