TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Publish What You Pay Indonesia urges the government to immediately take action against mining companies that refuse to deposit the mine reclamation and recovery guarantee funds. PWYP noted, as of January 2018, around 5,000 mining license holders had not deposited post-mining funds.

“Companies that are procedurally violating regulations and standards of mining activities are still allowed to carry out their operations freely. This must not be allowed to continue,“ said Manager of Advocacy and Networks of PWYP Indonesia Aryanto Nugroho, in Jakarta, yesterday.

Mine recovery deposit is an obligation contained in the Regulation of the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Number 7 of 2014 concerning Reclamation and Post-mining. The regulation mandates that mining permit holders pay these funds with exploration and production operations status since the government granted the concession.

The government’s absence to collect guarantee funds has prevented miners from restoring the areas they have dredged. Aryanto gave an example, in Samarinda, East Kalimantan, there were 232 mine pits in the area of ​​32 permit holders. Since 2012, 28 children’s lives have been lost because of the hole.

The Ministry of Energy gave sanctions in the form of a temporary suspension of operations for these recalcitrant miners through a circular number 1187/30 / DJB / 2017 in June last year. However, according to a PWYP Indonesia Steering Committee member, Carolus Tuah, the letter was ineffective because it only added 2 percent to post-mining deposits.

The Mining Advocacy Network (Jatam), Merah Djohansyah, previously regretted that the government continued to provide clean and clear status to post-mining deposit arrears. This status functions so that license holders can continue operations and obtain permits to export mining materials abroad.

Merah also reported that about 95 percent of mining permits in West Kalimantan still overlap in forest areas. The company also does not have a lease-to-use forest area permit even though this requirement is the main thing so that miners have trouble-free status.

The problem occurred because the Coal Mineral Coordination and Supervision team only focused on managing licenses in arrears for financial obligations, such as royalties, fixed fees, and sales of mining products. In contrast, mining that does not comply with environmental regulations is more detrimental to the surrounding community.

Merah gave an example, until now, environmental documents’ supervision, such as an analysis of environmental impacts, is still weak. According to him, many companies are making false Amdal documents. Starting from the practice of copying and pasting documents to engineering public participation. Due to problematic Amdal, Jatam noted that there were 39 community conflicts with mining companies. “There are also expired references and recommendations,” said Merah.

Director-General of Mineral and Coal Bambang Gatot Ariyono said the authority to revoke permits rests with the regional government. As an intervention step, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources only recommended the suspension of permits to the Ministry of Law and Human Rights. “The list has been submitted,” said Bambang, some time ago.

Responding to this, Merah considered the Ministry of Energy to “throw away authority”. According to him, Regulation of the Minister of Energy Number 43 of 2016 allows the central government to revoke permits for problem mining companies issued by local governments.