Tag Archives: resource conflict

Forum to Care for Papua’s Natural Resources Opposes ConocoPhillips Seismic Testing in Boven Digoel


September 5, 2013

It is not just plantations – oil and gas companies are also threatening to turn Southern West Papua into an industrial landscape. ConocoPhillips is planning to restart exploration (seismic testing) in the Warim block in the near future, a remote forest area mostly located in Boven Digoel regency, several hundred kilometres inland from Merauke. The Forum to Care for Papua’s Natural Resources drew attention to this latest threat in a recent press release, summarised in this article from Majalah Selangkah:

Forum to Care for Papua’s Natural Resources Opposes ConocoPhillips’ Papuan Operations


The Forum to Care for Papua’s Natural Resources has stated its clear opposition to ConocoPhillips commencing operations in West Papua.  In a press release issued in Yogyakarta, 31 August 2013 the forum explained various past, present and potential future impacts that arise when giant corporations move in and start operations anywhere in the land of Papua.

If ConocoPhillips moves in, they say, this will only aggravate symptoms of social breakdown and environmental damage, as such corporations are only interested in their own profits, and do not care about the environment and Papuan indigenous people.

As with other corporations in Papua, they claim that ConocoPhillips will only destroy the land which was used for extraction, destroy agricultural land, convert forest into an industrial area and reducing the land available for hunting and gathering peoples. In the long term, mining (including oil and gas exploitation) is a main contributor to turning land into wasteland, which is then almost impossible to restore.

According to the forum, mining in West Papua has caused land, water and air pollution such as dust, poisonous gases and noise. Coastal fish enclosures and coral reefs have been destroyed, floods and landslides have wiped out biodiversity. Acidic water flows into rivers and eventually to the sea, where it has destroyed coastal and marine ecosystems and resources. Mining causes various health problems, and local infrastructure such as roads are severely damaged. Mining also means new migrants move in to the area, either working for the company or starting their own business in the mining area.

They also say that mining creates symptoms of social distress such as prostitution, strong alcohol, gambling, and billiards. Land conflicts can occur, bringing with them a shift in socio-cultural values. Food sources such as forest gardens are polluted or damaged, meaning harvests fail. These are just some examples of the complex problems which the Papuan people in general suffer.
An Overview of ConocoPhillips

ConocoPhillips, according to data collected by the Forum to Care for Papua’s Natural Resources, is the third biggest US integrated energy company after Exxon and Shell based on market capitalisation and reserves. It operates in the oil and gas sector and is the USA’s second largest refiner, the fourth biggest globally.

ConocoPhillips has the fifth largest oil and gas reserves in the world. The company is known worldwide for its technological expertise in deep-sea exploration and production, reservoir management and exploitation, 3D seismic technology, high-grade petroleum coke upgrading and sulphur removal.

Operating in more than 40 countries, the company has around 38,300 employees worldwide and assets worth 164 billion US dollars. The company has four main activities around the world: Oil exploration and production; Refining, oil marketing, supply and transport; collecting processing and marketing natural gas; production and distribution of chemicals and plastics.

source: http://majalahselangkah.com/content/forum-peduli-sda-papua-tolak-conoco-philips-masuk-ke-papua

Since the report is somewhat short on details on ConocoPhillips’ actual plans in Papua, here’s a short article published by news website tempo.co in March with some more background information. In July the company reiterated its plans to carry out seismic testing in Boven Digoel and Pegunungan Bintang in 2014.
Govt Revises Conoco Phillips’ Contract in Papua

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – The government will reimburse the standstill period of the exploration in Block Warim, Papua, to oil and gas company Conoco Phillips. The block, a sharing contract for which was signed in 1987, had not been worked on since 1997 because most of the area has been used as Lorentz National Park.

Head of public relations at the Upstream Oil and Gas Special Task Force (SKK Migas) Elan Biantoro said the Warim block has about 14,000 square kilometers left, some 30 percent of the block’s original size. Other than being used as a national park, some areas in the block were returned to the state because no reserves were found there.

“This block has actually been explored; the initial commitment has been fulfilled and wells have been drilled. After the contract revision is signed, seismic studies may be done this year or next year,” Elan said.

He added that the Warim Block is believed to have considerable amount of hydrocarbon potential. Other oil and gas contractors, he said, are developing areas near the block.

“Around (Block Warim) there are plenty of oil and gas blocks owned by Exxon Mobil,” he said.


Source: http://en.tempo.co/read/news/2013/03/25/056469265/Govt-Revises-Conoco-Phillips-Contract-in-Papua

Soldier arrested as seven Papuan fisherman shot by the TNI

Bintang Papua,
28 December 2012
Seven Papuan fisherman were shot by members of the TNI (Indonesian army) near Pulau Papan district, Misol Perairan Raja Apat, West Papua. It is not clear why they were shot, but one TNI soldier is now being questioned by POM, the military police in Puncak Rafidin.The commander of 1704/Sorong, Lieut-Col. Rachman Zulkarnain refused to make any comment about the incident but he did not deny that a TNI solider was being interrogated by the military police. They were still trying to find out more about those responsible for the shooting. ‘I want the process to continue , until we can decide who should be charged for the incident,’ said Zulkarnain.

A spokesman for  the Cenderawasih XVII military command  also said that a member of the army is being interrogated intensively by POM.  The matter must be handled through legal channels, he said. He said that the commander would ensure that the person responsible would be firmly dealt with.

The spokesman also said that  the person who did the shooting was thought to be a member of Babinsa Koramil (low level military command personnel ) and one of those responsible has been identified as Praka BJ.

Head of public relations of the military command, I Gede Sumerta Jaja told the press that the case was still being investigated, while attention was at present concentrated on finding one of the victims.

One of the victims is at present being treated at Sorong Hospital  but he is not yet fit enough to be asked to make a statement. ‘We must respect his rights and not try to force him to make a statement,’ he said.

The bodies of four of the victims were discovered in a state of decomposition on Wednesday, La Nuni, 55, La Jaka, 30, La Edi, 20 and La Diri, 20. A fifth victim , La Ful, 13 is still being sought by a TNI/Police unit. The bodies were under water for almost a week but officials were able to identify them when they were  found.

Two other fisherman have also been found alive and are now being treated in hospital.

A representative of the military police met the families of the victims  and members of South Sulawesi  Families Association to continue with the process of identifying all the victims to finalise the process of identification and then moving them away from the area. The Association has called on the military command to make a statement, following information that indicated that the military and police were responsible for the shooting but the military have as yet failed to clarify the case. A spokesman of the Association said that they were still trying find other victims of the shooting.

Translated by TAPOL

Four killed in OTK shooting in Raja Ampat

English: Map (rough) of Raja Ampat islands, In...
English: Map of Raja Ampat islands, Papua (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Tabloid Jubi


December 23, 2012


 Jayapura (23/12) – “Unknown Persons” (OTK) returned to action in the Land of Papua. This time the victims were seven fishermen in the district of Raja Ampat, West Papua. Four people were reportedly killed and three others injured by shooting from unknown assailants.
The Papua Police Head of Public Relations, Chief Sumerta I Gede Jaya, said the incident occurred on Thursday (20/12) at around 18:00 local time. However, Police only received a report on Sunday (23/12) because the shooting incident took place in a remote area, approximately 4 to 5 hour drive from Raja Ampat.
“I received a report from the Chief of Police Raja Ampat where, on Thursday (20/12) and then around 18:00 CEST, there has been a shooting incident on Papan Island, Waigama, Northern District of Misool in the Raja Ampat, on the north west tip of West Papua.   The victim is believed to be an artisan explosive fishermen. In addition to distance, the scene is also very remote, “said I Gede Sumerta Jaya, on Sunday (23/12).
According to Jaya, four people are reportedly killed and three others suffered gunshot wounds due to the shooting.  “The four people dead are La Tula (13), La Nuni (55), La Jake (30) and La Edi (20). While the three victims of gunshot wounds is La Amu (20), La Udin (30) and La Self (20),”  the police chief explained.
He added that until now the police are still investigating the shooter. “The  shooting perpetrator is still under investigation. Currently, police and military are working together to uncover the culprit, “said I Gede Sumerta Jaya.
He Amu, one of the victims, said while they were looking for fish around the Papan island, another boat suddenly opened fire on them with a rifle.    A barrage of bullets targeted their boats, on one of them was a small child. He Amu could not identify who issued the shot, but she said she saw four people in the boat who issued these shots.
At time of writing, the two fishermen who survived were undergoing treatment at the Intensive Care Unit at Sorong Hospital.  Both has sustained gunshot wounds in the hands and feet, and their condition remained unstable, weak, and scared. (Jubi / Arjuna)