Sand mining company pulls out of PNG

Sea front in Madang, Papua New Guinea. Photo: RNZI/ Johnny Blades

A campaign to stop sand mining along 38 kilometres of Papua New Guinea’s Madang coast has been successful.

A Singaporean company, Niugini Sands, had applied to mine the sands but concerns were raised about the impact on coastal communities and the environment, which includes nesting grounds for the endangered leatherback turtle.

A court injunction was sought to try and force the Mineral Resources Authority to conduct further consultations with local communities within the Sumgilbar local government district.

But the authority advised environmentalist, Wenceslaus Magun, who led the campaign, that Niugini Sands had withdrawn its application to mine the sands.

He said the people were delighted with the outcome.

A Director of Niugini Sands, Marcus Ong, told RNZ Pacific earlier that all mining was harmful so the critical issue was how this was managed and how affected zones were rehabilitated.

He also said preliminary information showed the Madang sands were of too poor a quality for many other uses.

More Stories