I first heard about the mining plan of PT MMP in Bangka Island, early 2013 when I went there for the 2nd time. Chit-chat after diving. I jumped out of my seat and said NO WAY!!! Neveeeerrr!!
The 1st time I went to Bangka Island was my diving trip to Manado. The plan was to go diving in Bunaken, Manado Tua, and Lembeh. But my friend said “you gotta go to Bangka!” I directly thought of Bangka-Belitung. It turns out, it was close to Manado! ;) I went there straight away! That was March 2012
Now, I’ve been there 4 times! The nature is amazing! The underwater is one of the best, the soft coral makes the color of the sea bright blue. And its a small island! Based on the regulations*, any island under 200.000 hectares cannot be mined. And this is only 4700 hectares! So the mining plan of PT MMP (Mikgro Metal Perdana) is obviously illegal!
The Governor of North Sulawesi likes to claim that he is the “Green Governor”! Vice regent Sompie Singal also has to be responsible for this! I started this petition to push them to stop the mining, and save the island!
Last time I went there was Eid Mubarak. I went around the villages (which I didn’t think I was gonna go there). After having conversations with the locals, my God, they have been there for hundreds, maybe even thousands of years.
Almost 100% of the locals are against the mining plan. They are fighting (as much as they can) so that there wont be mining in Bangka Island. They fully understand that it could ruin the ocean, and eventually their source of life and income as fishermen. They also know that with the shape of the island it could very well break and sink.
# It would be disastrous if mining came to that island. # Lets move forward. Don’t be afraid. Don’t retreat. Tell your friends to support this petition and say no to PT MMP’s mining in Bangka Island!
From the environmental point of view: the waste would be overwhelming, from the rivers to the sea. The coral reefs would be destroyed, and the fish will dissapear.
From the social side: Automatically, if the fish are gone, the livelihood of the community (as most are fishermen will be gone too! Not to mention the tremendous amount of eviction that will happen, who knows to where. All your life you live in your home, then suddenly you’re forced to move and start all over again.
Thats why it’s important that we support Bangka Island and its inhabitants. Now its Bangka, next its other islands, before you know it our entire nature will be destroyed!
# Thank you for supporting #SaveBangkaIsland
— UU No. 27/2007 on Small Islands and Coastal Region Management. Bans mining activities for any islands smaller than 200.000 hectares
— UU No. 24/2007 on Disaster Management. Obligating vice regents to do a Disaster Risk Analysis for mining plans
— UU No. 32/2009 on Environmental protection and management. Obligating vice regents to do a strategic environmental study for spatial utilization. AMDAL documents needs to be a requirement for giving a permit for mining companies, and it needs to officially be open to the public
— UU No. 14/2008 on Public Information Transparency. Obligating vice regents to not omit information regarding policies on mining companies (such as PT Mikgro Metal Perdana)
Social Media Campaign #SaveBangkaIsland
Support us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/SaveBangkaIsland
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Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/SaveBangka
AMMALTA — Coastal People’s Alliance Against Tailings
KMPA — Tunas Hijau Airmadidi
WALHI — Friends of the Earth Indonesia
LMND — Liga Mahasiswa Nasional untuk Demokrasi Sulut
JATAM — Jaringan Advokasi Tambang
YLBHI — Yayasan Lembaga Bantuan Hukum Indonesia
YSNM — Yayasan Suara Nurani Minaesa
KIARA — Koalisi Rakyat untuk Keadilan Perikanan
ICW — Indonesia Corruption Watch
Friends of Lembeh-Pulisan-Bangka e.V.
BCF — Bangka Conservation Fund
Further information and contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Presiden Republik Indonesia
- Presiden Republik Indonesia
- President of the Republic of Indonesia
- Ditjen Pulau-Pulau Kecil KKP
- Minister ESDM RI
- Governor of North Sulawesi
Sinyo Harry Sarundajang
- Vice Regent of North Minahasa
September, 27th 2013
During the World Ocean Conference held in Manado in 2009, as a host and founding member, you endorsed and signed a Leaders Declaration for Regional Coral Triangle Commitment (CTI).
The leaders of the six Coral Triangle (CT) countries that joined efforts at this historic Summit committed together to a bold vision, and concrete actions, to conserve the area that is home to the richest and most abundant marine life on our planet. The declaration that You, together with the other five Pacific Country Leaders signed in Manado has been cited as “a new era in marine and coastal conservation for the Coral Triangle”. The commitments and announcements made at the Summit and related events have been stated as representing “one of the most important advances in marine conservation in history, and could one day be described as a tipping point for transforming the way marine and coastal resources are managed in this globally important area”.
This Leaders Declaration is a formal declaration, which binds the six participating governments to taking accelerated and collaborative action in addressing threats to marine, coastal, and small island ecosystems within the Coral Triangle (CT) region. Two large-scale, five-year funded programs totalling over US$100 million (ADB/GEF: $63 million; USAID: $40 million) are supporting The Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) which aims to see a fully functioning and effectively managed region-wide Coral Triangle Marine Protected Area System operating in the area.
Subsequently, You also publicly committed yourself to establish 20 million ha of Marine Park Areas across Indonesia by 2020, with strictly enforced and sufficiently financed protection systems for the areas. For your commitment and for taking leadership in establishing the CTI, in 2012 you were granted the first ever “Valuing Nature Award” by The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the World Resource Institute (WRI) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
These important commitments that You established are currently under threat, and we expect You to exercise your responsibility in this regard to stop the Governor of North Sulawesi Sinyo Harry Sarundajang and the North Minahasa Regent Sompie Singal from undermining our country’s and your personal international commitments, as well as Indonesia's responsibility to the world in regard to the protection of the Coral Triangle.
In 2007 Governor Sarundajang - who will stand for the upcoming presidential elections in 2014 - positioned himself internationally as Indonesia’s first “Green Governor”. Related to other mining investment plans in North Minahasa, Governor Sarundajang is on record to have stated, “The mine is located close to tourism sites [Bunaken Marine National Park and the Lembeh Strait], a fishing area, and a Nature Conservation Centre [Tangkoko]. If I approve the investment plan, what about their future…” Governor Sarundajang also stated that approval of mining in the area was not in line with hosting the World Ocean Conference in Manado. This statement is in direct contradiction to his current stance on mining plans for Bangka Island area.
We expect You, Mr President, to stop Governor Sarundajang from proceeding iron ore and related metal mining activities on Small Island and Marine Coral Treasure BANGKA, North Minahasa.
The verdict of the Administrative High Court of Makassar in March 2013 that ordered the cancellation of exploration permits by PT. Mikgro Metal Perdana (PT. MMP) has not been honoured. The protests of hundreds of Bangka and adjacent island inhabitants who refuse the mine firmly, are being ignored by the regional leaders. The entire village of Kahuku whose people have been living in the area for many generations, is targeted for resettlement to an area of protected mangroves. And all this is to make way for the establishment of a steel factory that would be built on a small island with very limited water resources. These facts, Mr President, are a disaster in the heart of the marine ecology conservation efforts that you have been aiming for with the establishment of the CTI.
The Chinese state owned company PT. Mikgro Metal Perdana, the Governor of North Sulawesi and the Regent of North Minahasa are violating and neglecting both our international commitments and Indonesian laws such as the Indonesian Constitutional Law No. 27/2007, which prohibits mineral and metal mining on small islands (less than 2000 km2) such as Bangka which only measures 4190 ha (41,9 km2). Meanwhile, Bangka Island is only 34 km away from the CTI Regional Secretariat which was recently built in Manado, and this secretariat is meant to take a leading role in hosting the World Coral Reef Conference in Manado in 2014.
According to Indonesian Constitutional Law No. 4/2009 public opinion must be considered when delineating an area for mining consideration. On Bangka and adjacent Kinabahutan, Talisei and Gangga islands close to 95% of the population, or some 4,500 inhabitants, have firmly rejected the mining plans for their area. In this regard 4,500 of our country’s islanders’ human rights are being violated. Their social peace being disturbed, their lives disrupted.
Indonesian Constitutional Law No. 10/2009 prohibits the destruction of part of or a total site that is stated as an object of tourism potential. Bangka Island is well recognized and included in the National Tourism Strategic Plan for world-renowned diving destinations. Mining at this site would not only completely destroy this national tourism destination, it would put the area’s neighbouring Bunaken Marine National Park and Lembeh Strait at great ecological risk.
Mr President, if You do not stop the mining plans for Bangka Island, this will not only be a threat to local communities who live on the island and its vicinity, it will be also a direct threat to coastal life within the area which includes protected mangroves, coral reefs, and cross-waters that support the life of several protected marine creatures.
Bangka Island is part of the marine tourism industry of North Sulawesi which is supporting the lives and livelihoods of thousands. Mining in the area would therefore also have a serious detrimental effect on the economy and sustainable future growth of the area. In the long run, North Sulawesi could vanish from marine tourism maps. Should this occur, 4,500 islanders and many thousands more that are intricately connected to the area’s tourism sector would lose their livelihoods forever.
Mr President, the destructive plans for Bangka Island undermine and are detrimental to the principles of the CTI declaration that you have signed and received international recognition for.
We, the People of Indonesia, together with the World Community, ask you to be committed to your word.
The potential destruction of Bangka Island is not only a critical local and national issue, saving this island is an international mandate, and it is also your personal mandate. Therefore we urge You to make sure that in respect to Bangka
1. valid Indonesian law will be honoured,
2. the principles of the CTI Leaders’ Declaration to be exercised as signed
3. the Bunaken Marine National Park to be expanded to Bangka island, Cape Pulisan and into Lembeh Strait
We expect You to give your statement to the above issues by the end of the year and have the statement be followed by a concrete action plan. We will ask for international support and sanctions to be imposed to Indonesia in case You don’t commit your word. The World Reef Conference might not take place in Manado then. Furthermore Indonesia might not be a host anymore for any of these conservation world conferences in the future. Our disappointment is deep and our anger towards this issue is unspeakable big. We feel Indonesia betrays the world.
The pending destruction of Bangka Island cannot be seen as a local or national issue—saving it is an international mandate! It is Your mandate.
Thanking You for your attention in this urgent matter while looking forward to your making decisive action we remain,
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