15 March 2023
Harita Nickel makes various efforts to deal with waste problems in Kawasi Village by providing facilities and infrastructure and inviting people to adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Kawasi is a small village located on Obi Island, South Halmahera, North Maluku, which is close to the operational site of a nickel mining and downstream company, Harita Nickel. Its location next to the coast makes this small village an outstanding natural scenery.
However, waste issues have become a 'stumbling block' that makes the scenery of Kawasi Village increasingly difficult to enjoy. In fact, this village is one of the economic centers on Obi Island. Many newcomers settle and run businesses in this village. The majority of the migrants come from Java Island, which captures a promising business opportunity provided by the existence of mining companies.
The waste problem in Kawasi Village has actually been around for a long time. Even before Harita Group's mining company set foot on Obi Island. This has become a homework assignment for the village government as well as the companies operating around Kawasi Village.
The people's awareness towards environmental cleanliness is still fairly weak. This frequently causes problems with the village's waterways. Not surprisingly, the village is subject to flooding during the rainy season.
It doesn't stop there. Piles of stagnant garbage also cause serious problems for the environment and the health of residents. From polluted water conditions to health problems caused by the massive growth of mosquito larvae and bacteria around areas exposed to waste pollution.
Asmawati, one of the natives of Kawasi Village, explained that prior to the company, local residents often littered.
"Sometimes it was thrown into the river, sometimes into the sea. Some we also burned," she explained.
However, destroying waste by burning is still considered less than optimal to reduce pollution in Kawasi Village. The small village, which is now inhabited by more than 1,100 people, produces a massive amount of waste.
"For now, the company's efforts include the transportation of waste using trucks every two days a week," said Eko Sulistyo, CSR Community Development Supervisor.
Furthermore, Eko explained that in single transportation, the total waste hauled from Kawasi Village can reach 2 tons per day. Such a large amount of waste is then taken to the landfill located about 20 minutes from the village.
"Alhamdulillah, since the company's regular waste transportation program, the village environment has become cleaner and more comfortable," said Asmawati.
The company has also made efforts to provide trash cans in every corner of Kawasi Village. This will facilitate the process of transporting waste and make it easier for residents to dispose of waste in its place.
In addition to providing facilities and infrastructure, Harita Nickel through some of its business units also continues to make various efforts to raise residents' awareness to the importance of environmental cleanliness. Among them are through regular activities, including a social service entitled "Healthy and Clean Lifestyle" which was held during the K3 month commemoration period on January 12 - February 12, 2023.
The activity involved employees, village officials, TNI/Police, and also local residents. Everyone worked together to clean up the trash scattered around the coast and Kawasi Village.
It is hoped that through activities initiated by the Company, people will be encouraged to play an active role in preserving their environment by adopting a healthy and clean lifestyle.