10 Apr 2008

New Caledonia action day planned against Goro Nickel

1:33 pm on 10 April 2008

Kanak chiefs and environmental organisations in New Caledonia have called for a day of action this Saturday in a bid to stop the construction of a waste pipe from the Goro Nickel plant into the lagoon.

Work on the pipe has been suspended since late February but Goro Nickel wants to test it within the next few months for production at the four-billion US dollar plant to start later this year.

The Kanak Rheebu Nuu group says the Kanaks are asserting their rights as recognised by the United Nations and plan to set up a totem on the reef to impose a traditional taboo.

One chief and veteran pro-independence politician, Roch Wamytan, says a totem not only means there is a ban but it's also call for a dialogue.

The pipe is to discharge up to 3,000 cubic metres of effluent an hour, with Goro Nickel saying it poses no risk to the environment.