Vital to focus on rural-based, renewable resources

Letters, Normal

The National, Tuesday 4th September, 2012

I BELIEVE PNG Chamber of Mines and Petroleum president Dr Ila Temu should not be supporting seabed mining.
I am not an environmental scien­tist nor am I an expert on seabed mining, but my conscience tells me that there is a siniste­r side to this subject.
One can understand the financial implication and consequences of a premature termination of a contract or agreement, but the reality is that laws or contracts can be changed or terminated if its intent is detrimental to other parties or community at large.
If we measure the costs of environmental destruction against the financial gains by the government, the damage caused will far outweigh the financial gains.
PNG has lost focus on the need to develop its rural-based eco­nomy such as agriculture, livestock, forestry and fishe­ries.
We are now focused on mining for minerals, oil and gas, which are not renewable resources.
For as long as we have lived,
our lives have been sustained by renewable resources.
Unless we change our focus from mineral exploration, we are losing control of our country and are subjecting ourselves and our economy to foreign control.
Seabed mining is a good example where the government has been convinced by a foreign company to issue it a “licence to destroy” our pristine environment.
I call on our people to take a stand to protect our environment.