Mining, oil & gas

Down to Earth No 60  February 2004

By Novi Siti Julaeha*

"When people are deprived of their rights, then it is natural to resist. And when injustice is purported to become law, then resistance is justified and it becomes their duty"(1)

Indonesia has a population of 201,241,999 people according to the 2000 census. The fourth largest country in the world after China, India, and the US, Indonesia is also a multi-ethnic society with 1,072 ethnic and sub ethnic groups(2).

Down to Earth No 58  August 2003


Indonesia is being pushed by powerful mining multinationals to open up protected forests for mining, but the international campaign to prevent yet more forest destruction is gaining momentum.

A final decision on whether or not companies can mine in Indonesia's protected forests - putting at risk some of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the world - is expected to be issued by Indonesia's parliament soon.

An Indonesian NGO coalition, led by mining advocacy network, JATAM, is campaigning to ma

Down to Earth No 58  August 2003


Two dead in Lonsum plantation dispute

On July 21, one 30-year old man was killed and another was reported to be in a critical condition after police shot at villagers in Bulukumba, South Sulawesi. Four of the injured were suffering from gun-shot wounds, according to media reports. Another man died on July 25th, during surgery to remove a bullet from his leg.

Down to Earth No 56  February 2003


The efforts of UK-based mining company Rio Tinto to convince the world of its commitment to human rights have suffered another blow. According to media reports, in December, the family of human rights defender and poet Wiji Thukul rejected a human rights award funded by the company. For the past two years, Rio Tinto has contributed funds to the Yap Thiam Hien Human Rights Award, won this year by Wiji Thukul, who has been missing since 1996.

Down to Earth No 56  February 2003

With major new oil and gas developments planned for Sulawesi, there is growing concern about the likely impacts on local livelihoods, forests, rare wildlife and the fragile marine ecosystem.

Central Sulawesi is being billed as Indonesia's next big gas producer by Indonesian companies with exploration projects in the province. Indonesia's state-owned oil and gas company, Pertamina, and Exspan Tomori Sulawesi - a subsidiary of Medco (see box) - say the province has huge potential for natural gas exploitation.

Down to Earth No 56  February 2003

The severely damaging impacts of mining on women have been highlighted in a new report, launched by Oxfam Community Aid Abroad on November 25th, International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Oxfam Community Aid's report, Tunnel Vision: Women, Mining and Communities, is a compilation of papers presented at a forum convened in Melbourne in June last year to explore the impacts of mining on women in local communities.

Down to Earth No 55  November 2002


The Indonesian government is close to approving the resumption of open-pit mining in protected forests - a move that is likely to speed up deforestation and the impoverishment of indigenous peoples.

Six mining companies will be the first to get approval from Jakarta to resume mining operations in protected forests, according to Indonesian press reports. The move is being vigorously opposed by civil society groups.