The Jakarta Post
The Timika church in Mimika, Papua, has voiced its opposition of the province’s planned oil palm plantation project, arguing that it would damage the environment and lead to a shortage of sago, the staple food of the Papuan Kamoro indigenous people.
Timika bishop Mgr. John Philiph Saklil said the establishment of an oil palm plantation was feared to make the area prone to flooding as the project would begin with clear-felling the forest, including sago plants.
“It’s better for the provincial administration to develop local plants like sago,” Saklil told The Jakarta Post on Monday.
He added that developing sago would pose no threat to the environment. Instead, he said, it is good for the forest and swamps and has more economic potential than oil palm.
“I’m questioning whose needs are being answered by the oil palm project? If the answer is the local...