Burning off Rubbish, & Dioxins

Mar 25th, 2010, in IM Posts, by

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86 Comments on “Burning off Rubbish, & Dioxins”

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  1. avatar Oigal says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 4:59 pm

    The USA and Europe have been dumping tons of CO2 and waste for the past 150 years.
    Even CHina and India still have to play catch up to Australian, US, UK and EU waste and pollution totals.

    Excluding the nonsense about China and India having to catch up to Australia unless you are talking per captia which is purely a sop in global damage terms. But hey, lets just play along.

    Yup everyone else has taken more than their share for 150 years and life sucks. Now stand, scream and shout about how unfair it is. Hear that sound…thats noise of no other country giving a stuff. If Indonesia cuts all of her forest down and drownS in the the cess pool of her own creation because someone slung her a couple of bucks…aww shucks..too bad..so sad!

    it is not the Indonesian who is the deforester- but logging concessionaires

    Weee… we all agree and that has fixed the problem!….not! Guess what, when Indonesia wakes up no one gives a stuff, no forest left, everyone who can has moved on. Indonesians (not you) can stand on the high moral ground over looking the cesspool and say but it just wasn’t fair.

  2. avatar Dikkiman Sujengkol says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 5:10 pm

    Excluding the nonsense about China and India having to catch up to Australia unless you are talking per captia which is purely a sop in global damage terms. But hey, lets just play along.

    Why is it nonsense ?

    Why don’t countries like China, India, and Indonesia have the right to pollute as much per capita as the U.S. and the advanced nations ?

  3. avatar Oigal says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Why don’t countries like China, India, and Indonesia have the right to pollute as much per capita as the U.S. and the advanced nations

  4. avatar Purba Negoro says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    Patung:
    Born Central Java, Djogjakarta Residentie 7 December 1941. Home birth- attendant Doctor Inlandie (product of the so-called ethical policy.

    Ethnicity- Javanese.

    The whole truth so help me God.

  5. avatar Dikkiman Sujengkol says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:15 pm

    Missed the rest of the comment.

    Point is, to say they can’t pollute is like saying, let there be (electric) light — unless you’re a poor Indian or Chinese farmer. Screw you, we’ve already got our plasma flat screens, you’ll just have to learn to be spiritual and non-consumptive.

  6. avatar Oigal says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    Sure go ahead. When the people start dropping like flies, the US and advanced nations will do what it takes to contain the damage within national borders.

    Countries like China, India and Indonesia will dig mass graves moaning its not fair..its not fair!

    In the next decade or so as Indonesia and others continue to punch out that self defeating mantra. It just an excuse to do nothing and doom millions will die of poverty, polluted water, pollution as the rest of the world looks on. Actually if you look at the state of Indonesia decade is probably on the high side of hope.

    Nonsense because it misses the point entirely. Whinge and stamp the feet all you like, the world is not going to change. At best it will shed a couple fo crocodile tears as the last tree falls. Much as it might be “feel good” tonic, the only people who can save Indonesia are Indonesians but don’t hold your breath.

  7. avatar Oigal says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    No its to say that to think that China, India etc can follow the same path as the “older developed” nations is simply not environmentally possible or sustainable. Only a fool would think otherwise.

    Yes, its not fair not just but it is a fact. To expect that the developed nations are going to “downsize” is just pipe smoking as well, humans ain’t that nice. Indonesia and other needs to find their own way to survive that differs from the traditional but I honestly doubt there is the desire, ability or intent.

  8. avatar Dikkiman Sujengkol says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 6:37 pm

    I agree it’s a fact that the world can’t take it.

    But here’s another fact: China and Indonesia (and probably India) are powering up with dirty coal. Indonesia’s ‘crash’ power program – adding 10,000 MW by this year was all coal. Chinese companies mostly financed it. There’s another 10,000 MW project slated to go.

    They’re gonna go ahead and do it. Better get ready.

  9. avatar bs says:
    April 16th, 2010 at 7:54 pm

    Oh come on, killing off all the cows would reduce more CO2 emissions than the couple of coal burning plants. I don’t like these plants too (horizon pollution), but Indonesians don’t have many alternatives and the Malthus like climate predictions are just impossible anyway.
    But what do you expect the Indonesian government to do? Build nuclear power plants on fault lines?

  10. avatar Oigal says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 6:24 am

    Indeed Dikki, indeed.

    That’s my point, I doubt humans (all) of us are smart enough to do anything about it.

    The most logical thing would be for the developed world to fund the developing world to hold their forests and environment instead on the short term return on pillage and plunder.
    However, we have all seen how the REDD scheme builds mansions in Jakarta and does not much for trees. Can anyone really account for the billions of dollars of environmental funds alreayd channeled into Indonesia? Can anyone really think the Indonesian Government is serious about the environment when you have just have to think of mud flows courtesy of the politically connected vampires. At local level how serious can we be as we glance at the Jakarta river systems and the trash tossed on the roads and river system.

    The real problem for places like Indonesia and the supporters of the idiots mantra “we have the same right as previous nations to pollute our way to the top” is that period of history has long passed them by. When the environment does collapse (sooner than later), the developed nations will suffer the least thanks to technology and infrastructure. Places like Indonesia will suffer mass deaths due to disease outbreaks, floods, failed crops etc etc and by that time it will be too wide spread across the world for anyone to provide aid even if they wanted to. So this “it’s our right is more like a funeral dirge than a rational protest”

    I do agree with with BM, Coal plants are the least of Indonesia’s environmental problems. Not sure that bashing cows is a solution tho.

    They’re gonna go ahead and do it. Better get ready.

    Yup, and I will pack up and move on as will all that can, all that will be left is the millions and millions of Indonesians who were sucked in by the anti-west excuse to avoid taking any responsibility for their own destiny.

  11. avatar Oigal says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 6:35 am

    Interesting and sort of related point, watching TV this morning, the latest poll in the USA indicates that 71% of Americans believe that Foreign Aid should be severely reduced or cut altogether. Of course, that would mean the end to organisations like the UN and the literally trillions of dollars provided to the developing world for all sorts of programs including environmental causes.

    Of course, we all know that China will step into the breach as the noble and generous nation they are…..cough.. Might be the old “be careful what you wish for” may very well be trueism..

    On a final note, just to be provocative.. Just how many years must pass as a sovereign nation before “developing” country should be changed to “Really stuffed this up” nation

  12. avatar ET says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    @ bs

    But what do you expect the Indonesian government to do? Build nuclear power plants on fault lines?

    There are other alternatives like geothermal energy for which Indonesia is a prime location. At least SBY seems committed to it and there is going to be a summit in Bali on the subject. However, whether his targets are feasible – I’ve read the figures somewhere but can’t remember but they all seemed to be exceedingly optimistic – remains to be seen.

  13. avatar Purba Negoro says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    ET
    yet another Westerner swooning over the prize fool and puppets SBY.
    SBY still has not enacted any of Megawati’s cabinet energy projects.

    SBY would not know what Geothermal was until the Energy Minister explained it to him in the form of a colouring book. Pak Taufik was right- SBY is a petulant child.

    It was Suharto (actually his energy ministers) who built all the geothermal plants- with excess capacity prior to projected demand.

    It was with the Dep Energy under Sec Jen we traveled to France then Germany to see their fantastic “geothermie” plants.

    One of the technologies they use in is “Hot Rocks”- the hot sub-crust layer heated by the mantle.
    very basically it is closed-loop system where water is fed in one pipe to the hot rocks, returns tot he surface as steam- drives a turbine- we get electricity.

    Currently Indonesia is in the top 5 geothermal producing nations.
    Yes- historically it exists, is well proven- we have more than enough hot rocks economically accessible (shallow) to pump water onto.
    The real issue in Indonesia- as in Japan- is seismically stable areas- and the most expensive and difficult element of the process is stable bores and lining them to prevent egress of high pressure water and stem.
    The turbine plant itself is quite affordable. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Hitachi Metals, Thyssen-Krupp-Siemens are the main providers of Indonesian turbines and sundries.

    BUT- with coal not only is it an economically attractive (cheap, plentiful, less reliant on geology)- but the supply and transportation chain provides long-term jobs.

    So this is an example of the common dilemma Indonesia faces- clean energy with few jobs, or dirtier energy with many jobs.

  14. avatar Dikkiman Sujengkol says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 3:47 pm

    Pak PN,

    Also, from a nationalist point of view, should we do the geothermal just because Bule says so ?

  15. avatar ET says:
    April 17th, 2010 at 5:51 pm

    BUT- with coal not only is it an economically attractive (cheap, plentiful, less reliant on geology)- but the supply and transportation chain provides long-term jobs.

    Jobs which have to be paid for and make electricity more expensive so it has to be subsidized with tax money in order to make it affordable for the rakyat. In the end a zero sum operation. The only good thing about it is that it would perhaps take a number of people off the streets and keep them busy. And coal is cheap only if one doesn’t take into account the backlash of environmental costs that one day we will all have to face.

    Today’s editorial of the Bali Post – Chinese owned, I know, I know – said a.o.

    Karena, dalam pembangkitan listrik energi terbarukan unsur biaya pengadaan, transportasi, subsidi dan pajak bahan bakarnya tidak ada. Sebab, sumber energi terbarukan sudah berada di tempat di mana pembangkitnya dibangun, serta sumber energinya tersedia dalam jumlah banyak, sumber energinya ada/terbarukan sepanjang zaman (berkelanjutan).

  16. avatar diego says:
    April 18th, 2010 at 12:12 am

    Balipost chinese owned? I thought it was by a person named Ketut Nadha?

  17. avatar ET says:
    April 18th, 2010 at 8:43 am

    Balipost chinese owned?

    Dixit PN in one of his earlier posts.

  18. avatar Purba Negoro says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    Et-
    I agree with your point- but energy & their jobs are subsidized in way form or another in all forms in any nation- either by government credits or end-user.
    Before Thatcher- was not all the energy in the UK state owned- and this the norm for Europe?

    As per the environmental effects- yes true- there are evidence-proven effects.

    One interesting point regarding Greenhouse emissions- is that if enough iron was available (say suspended from unmanned GPS positioned barges)- for phytoplankton in the Pacific- these miniscule creatures en masse would easily consume the global CO2 output.

    As per

    lso, from a nationalist point of view, should we do the geothermal just because Bule says so

    Don’t be silly- it has nothing to do with Bule- but everything to do with national development, government revenue, domestic jobs and of course profit for the companies involved.

    Personally, I agree & favour Geothermal- to me it’s a superb win-win technology which can pay itself off.
    I also am an advocate of village self sufficiency in power (micro hydro for instance) and waste.
    But we all know PLN needs to profit or at least break even and local & foreign friendly governments/companies do much better from large centralised model power station contracts

    But there also must be valid reasons why Japan also uses geothermal for a minor portion nett power production.

  19. avatar deta says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    I also am an advocate of village self sufficiency in power (micro hydro for instance) and waste.
    But we all know PLN needs to profit or at least break even and local & foreign friendly governments/companies do much better from large centralised model power station contracts

    Sure, the development of these small scale operations (micro hydro and biomass) wouldn’t be economically attractive compared to the development of large scale and highly invested businesses (with high proportion of foreign capital investment) of less sustainable energy sources like coal or geothermal as they can create enormous income to a certain party.

    However, we have all seen how the REDD scheme builds mansions in Jakarta and does not much for trees.

    REDD scheme is a vague concept anyway. In the most extreme interpretation, it’s like giving up your sovereignty in exchange for money and letting other people dictate you and say: go ahead buy some toys with this money while I use your country as a toilet.

  20. avatar ET says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    PN said

    But we all know PLN needs to profit or at least break even and local & foreign friendly governments/companies do much better from large centralised model power station contracts

    The reason they do better from large centralized power stations is because the technology is readily available and most stations are already depreciated, meaning less capital costs and higher net profits. The main question is will these profits be used for the long term development of new technologies and diversification of energy supply or will the short term goal of keeping the status quo with high dividends and without much risk prevail.
    Although I personally believe that market forces are the best economic regulator, the question of energy supply with its environmental and public health implications has grown beyond the scope of mere economics and should be taken under the wings of higher authorities.
    A typical topic for a Bilderberg conference under the title Global Governance.

  21. avatar deta says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    The main question is will these profits be used for the long term development of new technologies and diversification of energy supply or will the short term goal of keeping the status quo with high dividends and without much risk prevail.

    I am dreaming if the first prevails.

  22. avatar Oigal says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    go ahead buy some toys with this money while I use your country as a toilet.

    Eeer I thought the base concept was to pay money so another nation does not cut down forest so you can offsett using your own nation poorly??

    Still a moot point, who but a dreaming fool would even think that the money would go to where it was supposed to. Better off saving your AID money and channelling it internally and watch the destruction from afar.

  23. avatar ET says:
    April 19th, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    I am dreaming if the first prevails.

    So did Martin Luther King and in the end he got what he wanted.

  24. avatar Dan_the_fish_importer says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 7:51 am

    Hello Everyone,

    I’d just like to introduce myself as this is my first post. I have been reading articles on this website for a few days now and I find many of the comments interesting.

    I see many similarities with your daily problems and annoyances that we to have in the US. Of course far be it for me to assume to much, as I know that we have it “made in the shade” in America compared to the living standard of the rest of the world. That being said I am not a rich man by American standards or even most of the worlds standard. I am a small business man. I work hard and I don’t complain about the work I do or the money I make. (I could make more flipping burgers at McDonald’s…haha) In fact I enjoy what I do, and the people I get to interact with while I do my daily day to day operations. I speak with a lot of Asians, mostly Thai, Vietnamese, Cambodians, Laotians, and Chinese. In fact one of my best friends is Chinese, a very nice man that goes by Chau Paul. He is a seller of various goods on eBay, and lives in Hong Kong.

    Anyway, to stay on topic I will comment on this post. If anybody has any desire to hear more about me and what I do then just ask. Otherwise, we’ve all got a stoy to tell, and I won’t bore you with mine. I would like to mention that if anybody wants to make some money I am open to speaking about it and I invite you to ask me how that can be done.

    In a large portion of the US, we burn our trash in a manner just as described in this article. Outside of cities and towns, we just pile it up, dowse it with a little fuel and light it up. Being that I live in the rural area I see this every day. We do not have the will or infrastructure to handle the pickup from local residences scattered across the country side. You see in America the problem is the price. It costs too much money to pay someone to drive around collecting the rubbish. We have minimum wage laws and LABOR UNIONS that drive up the cost to prohibitive prices. I do not know if you have Unions in Indonesia but in America they are out of control. In many cases they are deeply involved with criminal organizations like the Mafia. At one time unions were a good thing, they brought about safety codes and maximum work hours and basically the right to earn a living wage without having to spend 18 of the 24 hours in a day toiling away, just so you would have enough money to pay the rent, wash your work clothes, and buy the days food. My advice here is do not let your country allow unions to control your vote as they do in the US. (for that matter don’t let the extremist Muslims run you either) Indonesia has the ability to be a great and wonderful place in the world.

    Plastics are a wonderful thing, very useful in there applications. However it is a shame to see the amount of waste created by a single bottle of water. It would seem to me that their is great opportunity here. In many places in the US, you can be paid for recycling. Each bottle has a specific value that a company will pay for it. However, generally the cost of collection is more expensive than what the bottles would pay so we still have to pay a fee for disposal. It has a value, as it is a lot cheaper to recycle plastic than it is to make new plastic. Perhaps citizens can be organized to collect their plastics and then sell them off to a re-cycler. I would imagine that their is at least one re-cycler of plastics in the country(?). If not for the money, then for the sake of everyones health. Personally I am not, what we call in America an “environmentalist” (these tend to be over zealous people, one who would keep some one from eating if it meant they would cause some sort of pollution AND, they also tend to be very hypocritical, a fine example would be Al Gore, his electricity supplier “Tennessee Power Authority” announced that he uses more electricity in one month than the average household uses in a year, but yet he tells us we are using to much power and polluting the planet and causing global warming -extremists and they are dangerous to society like any other extremist) However, I would not want to live in the conditions described by this article. I think everyone, everywhere would agree we all want clean cities, towns, parks, yards, etc.

    Well I wait for anyones comments to my opinion. I like to discuss with people of varied backgrounds, i.e. people other than Americans so I can really see the world as others see it.

  25. avatar ET says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    Reading Dan’s comment it seems not everything is that bleak here in Indonesia. Although we lack incinerators and a coherent public waste treatment and disposal policy, at least we have private – mostly one-man- enterprises that are the first step in the recycling process. Here in Bali they are called pemulung and they are guys on bicycles – nowadays even motorbikes – carrying two enormous bags on the back who search the rubbish in the open wastebins (tempat sampah) in front of the houses for reusable materials like metal, plastic and glass. If you collect these materials at home and hand it over to them they are even willing to pay for it. The collected materials are then taken to special sites where they are further sorted and loaded on trucks to Java for recycling.

    But the sad thing is that these men, despite their valuable service to the community but because they look poor and scruffy, are looked down upon and put on a par with beggars. So you will see in many villages signs with pictures and inscriptions ‘gepeng dan pemulung dilarang masuk’ meaning ‘beggars and garbage men not allowed’.
    This is a miserable aspect of the Indonesian way of keeping up appearances. Most don’t care about littering but despise those who actually make an effort and a living by removing part of the waste.

  26. avatar jan healy says:
    May 3rd, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    in my opinion the local habit of burning garbage is the number one threat to health and tourism in Bali. It is a fact of life here that at somepoint in the day you will be hit by a blast of dioxin. There are a number of reasons for this.

    it can be lack of understanding of the dangers of this pratice.

    it can be a lack of money, so rather than paying the banjar a monthly fee to collect and dispose of the garbage in a correct way, it is burnt.

    The worst case scenario and I am a victim of this is that your neighbours burn plastic and other items like wood, chicken remains and used canangs to extort money from the orang aising who they hope will pay then to stop.

    Its a complex issue. UU18/2008 states very clearly that burning of waste etc is illegal
    The village adat turns a blind eye.

    I live in an area where people burn garbage daily and no amount of getting the kilians to talk to offenders can make them stop. The attitude is that Balinese can do whatever they like on their land.

    This is not a matter that the orang aising wants everything their way, this is a matter of the health and well being of the indiviadual and the village.

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