Sangihe is home to 139,262 people in North Sumatra. It is rich in resources for under it is a sea volcanic mountain. It is also home to various and beautiful creatures from land unto the sea. Sangihe even holds a rare signature bird called Seriwang Sangihe, an 18 cm bird with blue feathers that will soon be gone. It is also home to four crucial endemics that have endangered its existence, yet it is peacefully captivated in mount Sahendaruman’s protected forest. This island is not only rich for its natural environment but also its prestigious and promising gold mining. Hereby lands a prestigious and profitable gold mining, yet it is still a home for a beautiful piece of Indonesia heritage.
Sadly around 163 miles of Sangihe island is endangered due to the mining industry. The industry holds the contract that makes them have the right to exploit gold and copper in six sub-districts divided into 80 villages for the next 33 years. By this action, a few villages will then be eradicated due to the exploitation.
Humanity’s creativity is the Earth’s most excellent resource, and humans are at the center of concerns for development (Read WYA’s White Paper on Sustainable Development here). Further, policies that allow creativity to flourish and that put people at the center of development concerns are essential to achieve sustainable development. A true vision of sustainable development takes into consideration population issues, in addition to environmental impact, but with an understanding of the inherent value of people.
Eradicating both humans and the environment will then destroy our Earth. People in Sangihe are the hope for the future climate. People in Sangihe are the one who takes care of the beauty of the Sangihe island. What will happen if they have to move out? How will the Island and the home to our environment gone by the blink of an eye?
At this moment, we have to see that people are the answer to what is happening. Eradicating both humans and the island environment will cause more extensive damage in the future. Our environment and Earth will be whatever we treat them. Therefore, we need to take more action to protect the environment then. At this very moment, how I support any environmental issues is by using my social media as one of the platforms for people to you can be a part of an organization that deals in the ecological problems, you can donate to the impacted community, or you can even share the awareness through your social media. It’s not about the amount of time we spend. It is about how we try to take part in change.
Published: Sept. 3, 2021
This blog piece was written by Fellycia Simanjutak, a WYA Asia Pacific intern from Indonesia.
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