Rai Coast MP Calls for closure of PNG’s Ramu Nickel Mine
Headlines, PNG News | Wednesday, August 28, 2019.
Member for Rai-Coast in Madang Province Peter Sapia is calling for the immediate closure of the Ramu Nickel Mine’s Basamuk refinery.
Mr. Sapia’s calls follow several images which went viral on social media Facebook, showing the sea’s color turning a different shade of red, brown and orange.
He says this is clearly a breach of the company’s environmental permit and therefore they shouldn’t be allowed to operate there anymore.
Mr. Sapia who directed his question to Minister for Environment of Conservation Geoffrey Kama today in Parliament says as local MP, he wants the Government to go back to the table and negotiate the future of the mine.
“Mr. Speaker according to the Ramu Nickel environment plan, the tailings waste will be processed properly before being discharged into the sea and that there will be zero leakage or spillage.
“I have already engaged an independent mining expert to be on site to conduct a quick inspection which I will present next week.
Mr. Speaker environmental plans are presented to the Conservation Environment and Protection Authority before any environmental permit is granted to any mine to operate.
“Ramu Nickel has now breached the environmental permit and therefore cannot operate anymore – profit must not be prioritized at the expense of the environment,” Mr. Sapia said.
Meantime Environment and Conservation Minister Geoffrey Kama in response, says he has engaged specialists working in the Department of Mining and they are in the area currently assessing the situation.
Mr. Kama says the suspected spill occurred on Saturday 24th August.
“Em spill tasol, long graun na wara mix I kam em spill na igo insait.”
Nau ol lain i wok long em I stap.
They will give me back the report and I am scheduled to go there next Monday.
Mi go long hap na taim mipla i lukim situation em i bagarap, yes bai umi pasim displa main.
Tasol bai umi lukim