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Walhi Calls for Moratorium on Tourism Projects In Bali

Environmental Watchdog Group Asks Governor Pastika to Remain Firm in Pledge to Protect Bali's Environment.

(1/4/2009) Friend of the Earth Indonesia - Bali - an environmental watchdog group known locally as Wahli, has sent a letter to Governor Made Mangku Pastika calling on the chief executive once again to take urgent and decisive actions to save Bali from the deleterious effects of tourism.

As reported in Kompas, the Director of Walhi Bali, Agung Wardana, said, "firm action is very important, bearing in mind that the environment of Bali is suffering under an escalating attack." He warned that if environmental conservation is not quickly taken into hand via a moratorium on tourism development, conflicts between those wishing to protect the island's ecology and those hungry for more land will boil over and only increase over time.

Wardana also told the press, "Governor Pastika, who was selected directly by the people of Bali, showed at the beginning of his term a synergy to work on behalf of the Island's environment." In Wardana's view, Governor Pastika has taken firm actions against a number of projects threatening Bali's natural environment. He hopes that the Governor will continue to take uncompromising action to keep Bali's ecology safe in the midst to the current boom in tourism facilities.

He also pointed out the growing imbalance in the Island's natural environment was demonstrated by the floods that have affected Badung, Gianyar and the city of Depasar.