MAC: Mines and Communities

Comments from Sunda Times readers:

Published by MAC on 2007-07-20

Comments from Sunda Times readers:

"I am the manager of the Nyaru menteng Orangutan rehabilitation centre. We can all agree that we do not want the rainforests and the fantastic biodiversity they consist of to dissapear. However, we have to find some win-win solutions we can all live with. It is too easy for us from the west, where we have already destroyed our forests and environment to tell others that they should not do the same...believe me so do I. But... the local people here also want to live a life like we do in the west. They want cars, nice houses, handphones and jobs. Who is to deny them I am sure that WWF is not being paid by BHP and neither am I, but I do agree with WWF that it is easier for conservation groups to deal with international companies like BHP than with an indonesian or chinese company. I am 100% sure that if BHP pulls out of Borneo...within a week those areas will belong to an Indonesian company. They dont care at all...everything will go. Everything is not black and white."

Lone Droscher Nielsen, Palangka Raya, Indonesia

"As an aussie I am disgusted by this Australian/UK company. This huge conglomerate pours sponsorship money into other 'environmental projects' in Aust., such as revegetation, platypus breeding complexes at Healesville Sanctuary & Melbourne Zoo etc to improve its profile - how can the executives & engineers who dream up these ventures sleep at night or even contemplate this?

WWF need to pull out their 'big guns' and get active on this one -as a member of WWF I want to see them going into defend the forest! Shame on BHP, shame."

Pamela Miskin, Wesburn, Victoria Australia

"I have been working with Dr Chivers and colleagues studying orang-utans in an area close to the proposed mining site and have spoken at length with biologists and conservationists in the area: there can be no doubt that this mine will be devastating to the area's wildlife. BHP may be more environmentally responsible than most mining companies, but there is a clear incompatability between mining and wildlife conservation, and it is puzzling how such a company can claim to be in support of wildlife/orang-utan conservation, considering the massive destruction that their mine will inevitably cause. And this is not to mention the double-whammy effect on global warming that will come about too, through both the continued burning of fossil fuels and loss of carbon sequestrating forest. I plead with UK and Indonesian officials to oppose this motion."

Mark Harrison, Cambridge, Cambs


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