Aimec Minerals’ Nuiguyo Project (Names have been changed in this document) is an open pit gold and silver mine located in the tropical southern district of one of Indonesia’s forested islands. Rubber and palm plantations flourish, but rice harvests are generally poor. Approximately 12,500 people live in the 11 directly affected villages (DAVs) immediately impacted by the Nuiguyo Project, and the mine may impact some of their agricultural work. These people are of primary concern to the Project, though human rights concerns exist for communities living alongside haul roads and downstream of the Project as well.
The Nuiguyo Project is fortunately free from the risk of violence or military intervention, and resettlement will be negligible, free of indigenous populations which present particular human rights concerns.
Although the Project presents opportunities for many positive impacts on human rights — particularly the right to health, right to education, and labor rights — a unique set of issues presents itself at Nuiguyo that will likely result in one or more controversies being labeled as human rights violations and taken to the international press or to the streets in local demonstrations. Activist groups in the area are demonstrably willing to redefine environmental issues as rights violations, and rights terminology has been effective for attacking foreign projects in the country in the past.
Additional issues arise with Project water management and local fears. Respect for the Right to Clean Water and Environment has not been sufficiently demonstrated by the Project, which is apparent in the EIA and reified in the fears of local communities.
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