Ministry Turns Down Nickel Smelter at Baluran National Park

Written By : Hermawan | 17 January 2015 

The Ministry of Environment and Forestry has officially turned down the proposal to use a part of Baluran National Park in Situbondo, East Java in the construction of a nickel smelter.

Previously, PT. Situbondo Metallindo (Ltd.) planned to use 600 meters of national park's area as an entrance to the smelter because they consider it as the shortest route possible.

The head of Baluran National Park, Emi Endah Suarni, said that the letter of renunciation was issued by the ministry through the General Directorate of Forest protection and Nature Conservation in the end of 2014. She added that the renunciation was due to the close proximity of the smelter to the national park. This raised a lot of concerns, that the smelting activity would disturb and harm the ecosystem in Baluran National Park.

"The nickel smelter has was turned down partly because the land on which it was going to be constructed is only apt for agriculture and farming industries. Mining-related industries are strictly prohibited," explained Emy Endah Suarni to Portalkbr, Saturday (17/1/2015).

Emy then continued by mentioning some regulations concerning forestry and nature conservation, that the Cultivation Right only allows land to be used in agriculture and farming industries, while mining-related industries are clearly outlawed.

The smelter was planned to be erected in Wonorejo village, Banyuputih regency, Situbondo, East Java. The facility is located only 500 meters away from the national park. The total investment value of the company is estimated to be around IDR 4 trillion. Once established, the smelter is expected to produce 243.000 tons of ferronickel alloy per year.

at first, the company designed the facility to be built on a 100-hectares land area in Lamongan village (Arjasa district) and also in Agel and Pesanggran villages (Jangkar district), Situbondo. Due to some prblems concerning the land use, the company then relocated to the land adjacent to Baluran National Park. In Wonorejo village, PT Situbondo Metallindo used the 360-hectares land which belonged to PT Baluran, a cotton plantation company.

Editor: Anto Sidharta, Source:, Photo and translated by: PROFAUNA

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