Indonesian President Joko Widodo talks with Elon Musk while looking at a smart phone

NGOs ask Elon Musk not to invest in Indonesia’s nickel industry over environmental woes

Dozens of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have sent an open letter to Elon Musk, urging the Tesla chief to not invest in Indonesia’s nickel industry on environmental concerns.

The letter by the NGOs, including Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (WALHI) and Friends of the Earth United States, follows Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s meeting with Mr Musk in Texas in May to discuss potential investments.

Indonesia has the world’s biggest nickel reserves and Mr Widodo is keen to develop a nickel-based EV industry at home. The government banned the export of unprocessed nickel ore from 2020 to ensure supply for investors.

However, environmentalists have been concerned the process would involve disposing of mining waste into the ocean.

Indonesia has the world’s biggest nickel reserves.(Reuters: Yusuf Ahmad )

The NGOs said in the letter that environmental damage results from the total area of ​​the forest converted to nickel mining, causing increased deforestation and the threats of polluted water in the river, lake, and the beach.


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