First step to develop a mine rehabilitation plan for old bauxite mines - Suriname, South America
International experts working closely with Indigenous people in the villages of the Marowijne district have completed a five-day orientation (26-30 March) and included a meeting with Edgar Dikan, Minister of Regional Development, Suriname. The collaborative meetings are hoped to provide the foundation for an action plan for the rehabilitation of old bauxite mines. The experts and key stakeholders have taken a field trip to the Wane Hills Mine in Marowijne, a district of Suriname, located on the north-east coastal region.
In accordance with the Kaliña & Lokono verdict of the Inter-American Court for Human Rights, the mined bauxite areas in the country must be rehabilitated. The delegation leader and environmental scientist and specialist in mine rehabilitation and Indigenous community consultation, was our very own Mark Annandale, Tropical Forests and People Research Centre, USC. Mark was supported by Cathal Doyle (Middlesex University London, England) a researcher in the areas of Indigenous and Human Rights to facilitate sessions with the delegation group and local counterparts, including the Association of Indigenous Village Leaders in Suriname.
The Marowijne orientation coincided with a 4-day workshop in Paramaribo organised by the Indigenous Peoples Advisory Forum from the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative. that was held 20-25 March. The workshop was attended by Indigenous people and Indigenous community development specialists from 6 countries including a strong delegation of Indigenous people from Suriname. The workshop involved Kalin'a and Lokono Peoples in Marowijne (KLIM), Association of Indigenous Village Leaders in Suriname, Forest Peoples Programme, the CEO of the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative Dr Fiona Solomon, Leopold Carlowitz from German Organization Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Mark Annandale. Suralco provided support for a field visit to their old bauxite mines at Wane Hills. Suralco is a Surinamese producer of bauxite and alumina is a subsidiary of Alcoa Corporation an American industrial corporation the world's sixth largest producer of aluminium. In a press release, the Suriname minister for regional Development, Edgar Dikan reports through the National Information Institute that the mission met with the Suriname regional development goals.
Suriname Deforestation Report - Provided by United Nations
Suriname has 15.3 million hectares of tropical rainforest covering over 94% of the country’s surface area (FAO, 2015). Suriname is covered by tropical rainforests, while the very small human population (approx. 556,000 United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division, 2015) is concentrated in and around the capital, Paramaribo, and along the north coastal region. Forests are one of Suriname's most abundant natural resources with a high economic potential. Forestry activities are concentrated in the north of Suriname and provide employment for approximately 9000 people, contributing roughly 2% to annual national GDP in 2011, (Global Forest Watch, 2015).
For further information about Indigenous Forestry Research group click here