Home Culture and Etiquettes How Indonesian deal with mining problems? Indonesia

How Indonesian deal with mining problems? Indonesia

For a long time, mining activities have become a big problem in Indonesia, even though Indonesian realize kind of benefits it give to their life. One and the biggest problem that people usually issue about mining activities is about how mining companies organize and manage their land, especially after they finished extracted all mineral resources from an area. This becomes a big public interest especially because there are some evidences in other countries where mining companies left their used land without performing any reclamation. It is why there are some mining areas left without being re-planted. The only scenery people can look is bare land or even huge hole in the ground.

In dealing with mining problems like those I’ve told above, most Indonesian do not know what they can do. In some places, people use their culture perspective in dealing with these problems. They consider nature as part of their life and therefore should not be damaged even a bit. Even though cultural perspective is considered as the best solution by local people, it won’t work since mining companies have different perspective in dealing with their areas. Mining companies will always speak about how much they can get from their mining areas as the first priority and put ecological matter. This is where most social clash problems came.

There is almost no mining companies in Indonesia which never faced social clash regarding their mining activities, whether it came from environment activists, local residences, government etc. However, among those people, the most serious problem almost always came from local residences. It is mainly because most mineral resources in Indonesia located in forest and isolated areas. Usually, local residences who live at these places still hold their culture and tradition firmly which includes in preserving their nature, especially forests as the only place where they can get food and everything they need. Keeping the nature equals with keeping their life and families. That is why when they realize there is someone who comes to their forest and want to exploit their forest, there is almost none of them who support the mining activities. From all social clashes ever happened in Indonesia regarding mining activities, most of them brought culture and tradition issue. That is why the only solution to fix the problem is using local residences’ perspective, not company perspective.

One solution that Indonesia mining companies usually give to local residences is once all activities done, they can get their land back through reclamation program. At the left side, you can see a reclamation program is being performed by a mining company in Indonesia. Reclamation done by moving soil into the water. The main purpose is to closed an area which is previously used for mining activities. Later, after reaching the desired thickness, this soil will be covered by top soil taken from the land removal at the first stage of mining exploitation. Trees will be later planted after compacting the soils and making sure that there are enough humus inside the soil.


/// Written by Melisa Natasha Mumek, Indonesia