Mining and logging companies won’t be concerned by this warning from a corpulent Minister facing his own corruption charges
PNG already has plenty of good environmental laws but nobody ever gets punished for breaching them…
… and Micah has already sat silent while his own home, New Ireland, has been trashed by illegal logging and mining..
Isaac Nicholas | Post Courier
PUBLIC Enterprises and State Investment Minister Ben Micah has put extractive industries on notice to respect and protect the environment.
He said logging, mining, oil and gas companies would not be allowed to dump their waste into the river systems under a new legislative framework currently being developed by Water PNG and Eda Ranu with coordination from the Independent Public Business Corporation.
“As much as we want to export our gas, minerals and logs, we must be very careful not to poison ourselves in the process,” he said.
Mr Micah said the Bougainville crisis started from an environmental issue with the polluted Jaba River which led to a conflict that claimed more than 20,000 lives.
“How many more rivers, streams and aquifers are going to be polluted tomorrow because of our mad rush for development of mineral resources, hydrocarbon assets and forest resources?” He said.
Mr Micah added that the National Executive Council has approved the Water and Sanitation (WAS) Policy, it will be used as a guide for the creation of new legislations to protect water resources in the future.
“I will be taking a submission to Cabinet to clearly seek NEC approval for Water PNG and Eda Ranu to be the main drivers of the WAS policy.
“They will work with other agencies, especially Health Department, National Planning and Environment and Conservation, so that can get support from international agencies that have the latest technology.
“We will also have access to low interest rates to help us develop the capacity of Water PNG and Eda Ranu to deliver this very vital service to the people of Papua New Guinea.
“I intend to do that by getting IPBC to take the lead in putting together a strategy that will enable Eda Ranu and Water PNG to become responsible for protecting water supply.
But firstly, we need to upgrade and improve current services that are being provided in Port Moresby and other urban centres.