Jemimah Sukbat | Loop PNG | December 2, 2017
Karkar Island has joined New Guinea Islanders in the fight against seabed mining.
This was the message from senior statesman Sir Arnold Amet.
His message was relayed by Member for Madang Brian Kramer at the School of Natural and Physical Sciences forum at UPNG’s main lecture theatre recently.
Kramer, who was just there as an observer, relayed Sir Arnold’s written speech as he was unable to attend the forum.
Sir Arnold says the Karkar Island, where he comes from, is located in the western part of the Bismarck Sea. Therefore, he and the islanders are pledging their support in the stand against the development of seabed mining.
He said the project will be the world’s first deep sea mine operation and a high level of uncertainty surrounds it.
Furthermore, the mine is situated on traditional fishing grounds thus it threatens the villagers’ main source of income, food and the tourism industry.
The mine is 25km from Kono and Messi villages of west coast New Ireland. It is also 40km from the Duke of York Island of East New Britain.
In 2012, PNG decided to issue the world’s first commercial mining licence to Canadian mining company, Nautilus Minerals Inc, to mine the Solwara 1 project in the Bismarck Sea.
The project is expected to be a reality in 2019.