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People of Pulo Padang: The Mill May Pollute Environment

Special doc./Some people protested the mill of PPSP for the assumption to make environmental pollution
People of Pulo Padang: The Mill May Pollute Environment

InfoSAWIT, LABUHANBATU – A woman did a protest by lifting up a poster with the note "Kami Mau Sehat, Tidak Dicemari PT PPSP" when President Joko Widodo visited Regency of Labuhanbatu, North Sumatera Province, Friday (15/3). It went viral in social media but the protest should come to an end because of unknown man that forced her to put the poster down.

The action was from the people of Pulo Padang, Sub district of Rantau Utara, Regency of Labuhanbatu, North Sumatera. This showed their concern about the mill operational of PT Pulo Padang Sawit Permai (PPSP) that may pollute their environment. The mill is next to the people’s circumstance, cause pollution, bad smell, and noise.

As quoted from VOA, Sri Hasibuan, from Pulo Padang also told the same thing. The mill operates next to the circumstance and school. He said, many people did not agree with the mill and protest it since 2-17 but there was not satisfied conclusion. The mill even breaks some regulations, such as, the Regulation of Minister of Industry Number 40 / 2016 about Technical Guideline about Industrial Regional Development.

The mill is not operating now after the people block the trucks full of material to be processed (in the mill). But it would be temporary because it would operate after some time passed.

The people of Pulo Padang did class action about the presence of the mill, but there was no solution for them because of the air pollution from the mill.

Juniaty Aritonang from Bantuan Hukum dan Advokasi Rakyat Sumatra Utara (BAKUMSU) said that the mill of PT PPSP breaks the Regional Regulation Number 3 / 2016 about Spatial Plans in Regency of Labuhanbatu in 2015 - 2035.

On the other hand, the manager of PT PPSP, Hernowo claimed only few people disagree with the mill while the company has got official documents to operate.

Though PT PPSP still does it best to minimize the negative environmental impacts, such as, making capturing tools to get ash from the burning process, and reducing the noise, what the people’s complained about should be the main focus. The mediation between the two parties in November 2023 did not successfully run. PT PPSP offered a solution by making the school with soundproof. (T2)