ABC News In-depth (March 9, 2023) – On Australia’s northern doorstep lies one of the most extraordinary places on earth – some environmentalists call it the second Amazon. The Sepik River Basin in Papua New Guinea is a natural wonder and home to rich and ancient cultures.
It’s a place few outsiders ever get to see. For some time, PNG correspondent Natalie Whiting has been hearing rumours about what’s going on in the remote areas upriver – claims of a logging land grab, police brutality, even killings. She undertakes the journey far up the Sepik River to see for herself what’s happening. In the rainforest of the Upper Sepik a community is divided.
Logging operations and a proposed massive mine site bring hope of economic prosperity for some. But others fear development of the land by international companies means environmental destruction with little benefit. PNG is the world’s largest exporter of tropical round logs but out of sight in the Sepik region some landowners say the logging is happening without proper consent and there are consequences for those who stand in the way.
With a long history of mistrust of big corporations and the promises they make, many of the locals are angry and ready to do whatever it takes to preserve some of the most unspoilt rainforests and waterways on the planet. Read more here: https://ab.co/3Jr8kWE