High-speed railway project feasible from environmental aspect: Minister

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesias Environmental Affairs and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya has said the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway project was issued permit only when it was found feasible from the environmental aspect.

"As for its environmental worthiness, yes, its feasible, therefore the permit has been issued. The fact is that the Environmental Impact Assessment (Amdal) has improved, and indeed it must improve all time," Minister Nurbaya said at the Presidential Palace here on Tuesday.

She said there has been no problem regarding granting of the environmental permit.

The minister explained that Amdal comprises three documents: first, an assessment of the crucial impact of the project on environment; second, a document on the Environmental Management Plan (RKL); and third, a document on the Environmental Monitoring Plan (RPL).

"All inputs could be accommodated in the three documents. It can be improved," she stated.

The Amdal includes working plans to tackle any environmental impact.

"If there are more inputs, its still possible to accommodate these because we give a months time," she added.

New inputs could improve and further perfect the RKL and RPL documents, she said.

The construction of this 142.3 kilometer railway worth US$5.5 billion has started after President Joko Widodo officially launched it with a ground-breaking ceremony on January 21, 2016. Later, the project triggered a debate about some pros and cons associated with it.(*)

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