Batangtoru, 7 September 2021–PT Agincourt Resources (PTAR), the operator of Martabe Gold Mine, has succeeded in improving the quality of processed waste water that flows into Batangtoru River. This is proven by the laboratory results of the processed waste water for the period of quarter IV/2020, quarter I/2021, and quarter II/2021 which were announced simultaneously in Medan and Padangsidimpuan, on Friday, 3 September 2021.
Experts Team from the Evaluation Division of the Integrated Processed Waste Water Quality Monitoring Team from PTAR Martabe Gold Mine Drs. Chairuddin, M.Si said, based on the results of laboratory tests, the processed waste water from Martabe Gold Mine that was discharged into Batangtoru River in the three quarters consistently met the quality standards set by the government.
“We really appreciate PTAR because they continue to improve the results of their processed waste water treatment system. As we all know from the reading of the results, there are no parameters that exceed the quality standards,” explained Chairuddin in the dissemination.
This activity was attended by the representatives of the North Sumatra Environmental Agency, North Sumatra Energy and Mineral Resources Agency, as well as the experts who are the members of the Integrated Team in Medan. Meanwhile, in Padangsidimpuan, this activity was attended by the Head of the South Tapanuli Environment Agency, Ir. Syahrir Siregar and the community representatives of the directly affected villages, Martabe Community Consultation Assembly (LKMM), and Batangtoru and Muara Batangtoru District Leadership Assembly (Muspika).
Meanwhile, the fulfillment of the quality of the processed waste water from Martabe Gold Mine is in accordance with the quality standards, namely based on the Decree of the Minister of Environment No. 202/2004 concerning Wastewater Quality Standards for Gold and/or Copper Ore Mining businesses and/or activities, as well as Minister of Environment and Forestry Regulation No. 202/2004. P.68/MENLHK/Setjen/Kum.1/8/2016 concerning Domestic Wastewater Quality Standards.
Routinely, every month the Integrated Team together with PTAR Environment Department monitor the quality of the treated water by taking water samples from Batangtoru River. The water parameters analyzed include water acidity (pH), Total Suspended Solids (TSS), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), mercury (Hg), nickel (Ni), cyanide (CN), arsenic (As), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn). The water sampling location starts at the end point of the inlet and outlet end of the treated water pipe (outlet), Batangtoru River at 500 meters before the water discharge point, the mixing point of the treated water and Batangtoru River water (outfall), and 500 meters, 1,000 meters, 2,000 meters and 3,000 meters after the discharge of water. Samples of the treated water are then sent to the independent laboratory of PT Intertek Utama Services and the results are also socialized and disseminated to the directly affected community.
PTAR External Relations Director Sanny Tjan said that the formation of the Integrated Team consisting of the representatives from various elements of community and their participation in routine monitoring is one of the operational transparency efforts carried out by Martabe Gold Mine.
The Integrated Team currently on duty is based on the Decree of the Governor of North Sumatra No.188.44/807/KPTS/2019. The Integrated Team consists of the representatives from local governments, experts from universities, representatives of PTAR employees, as well as community representatives from directly affected villages/sub-districts whose members change through the renewal of the Decree (SK) of the Governor of North Sumatra every 4 years. The Integrated Team has been formed since 2013.
“We always strive to ensure that the processed waste water treatment system at Martabe Gold Mine has gone through a high-quality process, complies with the permits, and is monitored very closely, so as not to have an impact on water quality in Batangtoru River. Through regular monitoring, socialization and dissemination of the results of these laboratory tests, we have obtained authentic data which we hope can be the basis for increasing public and government confidence in the sustainability of the business practices and standard operating procedures of Martabe Gold Mine. We also appreciate the South Tapanuli Regency Government which routinely oversees the testing process of the processed waste water,” said Sanny.
Biodiversity Management Commitment
Separately, PTAR Senior Manager Corporate Communications Katarina Siburian Hardono added, monitoring and treating water at Martabe Gold Mine is only one of the various environmental and biodiversity management efforts being carried out. These efforts are carried out, among others, by coordinating and collaborating with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, and the North Sumatra Natural Resources Conservation Center (BBKSDA). One of them is with the support of the release of Sumatran Tiger Sri Nabila to Kappi Forest, Mount Leuser National Park (TNGL). Not only that, PTAR has also provided patrol and operational car support, as well as tiger transportation cages for Barumun Nagari Wildlife Sanctuary which is managed by Persamuhan Bodhicitta Mandala Medan Foundation (YPBMM). “We are also intensively collaborating with various experts and third parties to support the protection of biodiversity, both through education, socialization, and prevention of hunting and wildlife trade. PTAR is very concerned and committed to making various positive efforts to maintain the balance and conservation of biodiversity in Martabe Gold Mine operational area,” said Katarina.