A trial run of the Min Lwin Mountain cement factory project in the Pein Hne Taw Village Group in Thaton Township, Mon State has harmed the natural environment and residents’ livelihoods and health.
The claims about the project, which is being run by the Phyu Min Tun Company, were made in a 21-page report entitled ‘Harms to Livelihood, Natural Environment, and Health of the Min Lwin Mountain Cement Factory.’
The report issued on 21 April was compiled by the Min Lwin Area Natural Environment Protection Committee after they conducted surveys in 14 villages in the Min Lwin Mountain area on 9 and 10 April.
It accused the Phyu Min Tun Company of swindling residents in the way they collected signatures and fingerprints. It also said the company threatened residents, gave them little compensation and damaged farmland by driving company vehicles over it during the trial period.
Naw Ka Paw Say, secretary of Min Lwin Area Natural Environment Protection Committee said: “Harm has been caused during the trial period. The report was released to protect the lands from damage and to obtain rights. The authorities have to recognise the views of those at the grassroots level.”
The Min Lwin Area Natural Environment Protection Committee will also submit letters and reports calling for the cancellation of the Min Lwin Mountain Cement Factory Project to the president, the Mon State Government and the Karen National Union (KNU).
According to another report entitled ‘Consequences and Air Pollution of Cement Factories’ by Syed Sana Mehraj and Dr. G. A Bhat gases emitted by cement factories can cause air pollution and climate change and the cement industry is responsible for five percent of global man-made CO2 emissions.