by Jack Lapauve Jr – EM TV, Port Moresby
The Department of Environment and Conservation officials spent two days in villages adjacent to the Ramu NiCo Basamuk Refinery site to communicate the important findings of the deep sea tailings placement (DSTP).
The team, comprising Dr Lemas Pangum, Mining Advisor with DEC and Gabriel Luluaki, were accompanied by Ramu NiCo Health, Safety and Environment officers, as well as an observer team from the Madang provincial government.
The awareness at Mindre and Ganglau villages conforms to a National Court Order whereby the state and the developer (Ramu NiCo) would conduct awareness on the DSTP on quarterly bases to inform the villagers and stakeholders on the operation of the DSTP.
Two main agendas were discussed; namely findings of DEC investigations in June 2014 and key outcomes from an independent consultants study of the marine environment by Ian Hargreaves and associates of Australia.
Key findings from the independent audit of the marine environment carried out by Ian Hargreaves & Associates were also conveyed to the communities.
Ian Hargreaves and Associates is an independent consultant company from Australia, engaged by Ramu NiCo as required by the environment permit to undertake two-yearly audits of the marine environment.
He clarified to the villagers that the survey by the independent consultant concluded that no significant differences were found between results of the 2007 baseline survey and 2013 post-operational survey.