The former coal mining area of PT Jorong Barutama Greston (JBG) in Swarangan Village, Jorong Sub-district, Tanah Laut Regency, became the target of reforestation by Lambung Mangkurat University (ULM).
The reclamation process of ex-mining land is part of the New Colombo Plan 2019 Summer Course Program initiated by ULM by inviting Newcastle University.
"We invited the students and lecturers from the two different state universities, who were the participants, to plant trees in the former mining area," said Arief Budiman, chief executive of the activities of ULM in Banjarmasin on Monday.
Arief said, the planting was a form of reclamation, as well as the preservation of the endemic plant species of South Kalimantan, namely Kasturi.
"So in addition to reclamation of post-mining land, we at the same time preserve the kasturi tree which is the mascot of South Kalimantan and is now threatened with extinction," he explained
Even the Chairperson of the ULM International Service Unit stated that Kasturi is a type of fruit plant capable of adapting well to stagnant land such as swamps. It can thrive with a height reaching 30 meters in the forest and on the banks of rivers.
"The kasturi tree whose fruit has been named the mascot of South Kalimantan, is very appropriate to be planted on ex-mining land," he said.
After planting, the activity was continued by seeing mining activities carried out by PT JBG while visiting the waste water treatment research area.
Here PT JBG employees develop a type of plant that can neutralize the content of acids and metals in water, so that water mixed with mining products can be reused for daily use.
The plant called Gempol was developed at the JBG Nursery location.
After browsing the development of plants in JBG Nursery, the activity continued with a visit to the local farms. The farmers develop manure and compost, which will later be sold to the company.
While PT JBG, which is a mining company from Thailand's white elephant country, is committed to a greening program. The company wants to leave a good environment by completing the fulfillment of obligations in environmental management.
PT JBG is mining around 1,600 hectares with a concession area of 2,500 hectares, in the next few years, it will stop operating.