TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - G. Budisatrio Djiwandono, member of the New Capital City (IKN) Bill Special Committee, said that illegal mining activities in East Kalimantan threaten the sustainability of new capital city development.
In a Public Consultation of the IKN Bill Special Committee on Tuesday, January 11, he said that the real threat to deforestation in East Kalimantan is illegal mining.
"These are buffer areas that support the new capital. If we don't pay attention to them, there is a possibility that [in] the new capital [there will be] natural disasters such as floods," he said.
According to Budi, illegal mining becomes rampant over the rapid economic growth, leading to soaring demand for natural resources in the form of oil, gas and coal.
He said that East Kalimantan's abundant wealth in the form of land and forest is threatened with land degradation that came with excessive illegal mining. This comes amid the Environment and Forestry Ministry's efforts to reduce deforestation and forest fires.
Budi remarked that the construction of the new capital is a good momentum to pay attention to the needs of the surrounding buffer zones.
He said that the development would not only be focused on the 260,000 hectares of land where the new capital city would be, but also on issues related to equitable connectivity and infrastructure in East Kalimantan, to support the provision of water, electricity, and food.
He said that he agrees to not only develop the new capital but also "buffering districts/cities such as Balikpapan, Samarinda, Mahakam Hulu, Penajem Paser. Don't leave them behind."