Cultural and natural factors of Tin mining
in Banka island, Indonesia
Why people use the Cultural and Natural environment?
Tin mining in Indonesia is important because One third of the world’s tin production comes from two Indonesian islands, Bangka and Belitung. 90% of that production is from the province of Bangka-Belitung, which are two large islands with many small ones. People use the natural environment of this province by mining in Bangka which is mined onshore and offshore. Banka island is getting destroyed because people are taking advantage of the natural environment by destroying forests and animal life to dig up the soil for tin which is used for electronics like phones, laptops and computers. Workers have to strip layers of earth to uncover tin in illegal mining sit pits. Bangka island is one big mining pit. There are thousands of craters on the island which are for mining tin. People also tin mine offshore by the use of Suction ships and bucket dredgers. Most of the materials collected by bucket dredgers is non-valuable and is mostly sand, they then dump the sand back into the ocean. People mine from makeshift pontoons where other suction pipes are working from the decks of the pontoons, from where workers scratch the seabed with long, heavy bamboo sticks to stir the sand and expose the ore. Once sucked up to the pontoon, the heavier tin ore falls to the bottom of the wooden platform while the sand is washed back into the sea. People also dive to mine for tin and suck tin ore from the seabed through a large, plastic tube connected to a diesel-propelled pump – like a vacuum cleaner. There are more than 40 smelting companies on the island, some companies buy tin off illegal miners. Other companies don't even have mining areas at all but they can export tin which is illegal. Banka has an airport called the Depati Amir Airport and roads for mine workers to get to and from, normally riding on motor bikes to get to the big mining pit.
People discovered tin in Bangka in 1814, Dutch colonialists began importing Chinese labourers to extract the metal. Today, the descendants of those labourers live in many of the villages across the island. People use this region for mining because tin is found in Parts of asia such as Malaysia, Thailand and in this case- Banka, Indonesia. Tin is found in the ore cassiterite. Ore cassiterite is found in hydrothermal veins and pegmatites. The sources of cassiterite in Banga are aulluvial deposits, this means that when the workers are mining for tin they will come across other weathered grains like slit and clay and larger particles of sand and gravel. Tin is also found in igneous rocks.