Isabel mothers oppose mining and logging - Solomon Star News

Isabel mothers oppose mining and logging

01 September 2014

Members of Isabel Mothers Union say they oppose to all kinds of logging and mining operations in the province.

Logging and mining, they say, are disgraces to society.

The mothers made their stand know in Honiara where they have attended the Mothers Union conference, which ended yesterday.

Isabel has been the scene of some of the most destructive logging operations in the country.

There’s no mining yet, but two overseas mining companies have waged a battle for rights to carry out nickel mining on the island.

But the mothers said they are working with environmental organisation Nature Conservancy since 2012 to raise awareness on the dangers of mining and logging.

President of Isabel Mothers Union Moira Dasipio said:

“Isabel has been destroyed much by logging. We don’t want mining to add more damage. This is why we are partnering with The Nature Conservancy to protect our land.

“We have been liaising with them and have raised more awareness to the local communities of the likely effects of these two destructive industries.

“These two industries have taken advantage of the ignorance of the rural communities, gave false promise of development, but the fact is that they only bring in poverty and exploitation to our land.

“Loggers exploit our lands, our rivers, forests and resources; they exploit our children, young girls especially, and they left us poorer than before.”

Dasipio said they have in the past two years seen the fruit of their work with The Nature Conservancy and their partnership is an ongoing one hoping to see more improvements in the future.

“We are working in partnership with TNC and hoping to achieve more in the future.

“This is to ensure that these two destructive industries don’t cause further damage to our land.”

In 2013, the mothers spearheaded the mining forum in Isabel that came up with a conclusion and resolution that Isabel is not ready for mining.

Japanese mining firm, Sumitomo Ltd, is doing prospecting for nickel on two tenements in Bugotu.

Australian firm, Axiom Ltd is also competing with Sumitomo to mine another tenement on the area, a move that resulted in a court battle between the two recently.

Isabel Province was among the most logged provinces in the country.