BHP began construction of Ok Tedi copper and gold mine in Papua New Guinea. Operations began in 1984 and the company dumped untreated mining waste into the river system. More than 2,000 square kilometres of forest has been damaged or destroyed by mine tailings (waste). The hunting, fishing and garden areas of an estimated 40,000 local and Indigenous people have been damaged or destroyed. Fish populations have declined by 95 percent in the Ok Tedi River compromising people’s livelihoods, food security and forest based culture. Mount Fubilan, the site of the Ok Tedi Mine, has been reduced from a peak of over 2,000m, to a 3km wide open pit, the bottom of which lies at sea level. Ok Tedi is noticeably absent from BHP’s own timeline
What happened next? See BHP 2002 below.