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Int’l Media Coverage

BBC
Nov 1, 2008 | Mud eruption ’caused by drilling’
The eruption of the Lusi mud volcano in Indonesia was caused by drilling for oil and gas, a meeting of 74 leading geologists has concluded.

ASIANEWS.IT
Oct 31, 2008 | Lapindo Brantas “responsible” for mud flow
Dozens of world-renowned geologists agree that the eruption of boiling mud in Porong is the result of a botched borehole excavation. For years, there have been disputes about who should pay damages and compensate the thousands of displaced persons

DURHAM UNIVERSITY
Oct 30, 2008 | Conclusive vote by global scientists determines real cause of Indonesian mud volcano
A Durham University scientist has played a key role in helping determine the cause of the Java mud volcano, Lusi.

NEWSTATESMEN
Oct 30, 2008 | Science decoded – The mystery of Lusi
Paul Rodgers cuts through the technical jargon to explain what’s really going on in science

REUTERS
Sept 9, 2008 | Indonesia mud lake draws tourists to disaster zone
PORONG, Indonesia, Sept 9 (Reuters) – Mud tourism is about the only thing that is flourishing in Porong, an East Java suburb that two years ago became a disaster zone when hot volcanic mud began spewing from the site of a gas exploration well.

IRISHTIMES
July 29, 2008 | Indonesia’s Ground Zero expanding

REUTERS
Jun 9, 2008 | Drilling caused Indonesian mud volcano – report
WASHINGTON, June 9 (Reuters) – Drilling of a gas exploration well, and not an earthquake, set off a volcano that has been spewing boiling mud for two years and has displaced more than 50,000 people on the Indonesian island of Java, experts said on Monday. Records kept by oil and gas company Lapindo Brantas during the drilling of a gas exploration well called Banjar-Panji-1 show specific incidents that could have triggered the disaster, the international team of experts said. More
News Release | Durham University
Press Release | UC Berkeley

May 29, 2008 | UPDATE 1-Two years on, Indonesia mud volcano still flowing
PORONG, Indonesia, May 29 (Reuters) – Two years after a mud volcano started erupting on Indonesia’s Java island, thousands of people who lost their homes are still living in squalid makeshift shelters with no signs the flow of sludge is about to stop soon. On May 29, 2006, hot noxious grey mud began spewing from a gas exploration site in the industrial district of Sidoardjo in East Java, forming what is now known as the Lusi mud volcano. More

May 28, 2008 | Indonesian mud volcano could redirect rivers
LONDON (Reuters) – The collapse of the world’s fastest-growing mud volcano could redirect nearby rivers and threaten villages in Indonesia, researchers said on Wednesday. The central part of the volcano on the island of Java is collapsing at a rate of up to three meters a day sporadically, they reported in the journal Environmental Geology. More

AFP
Jun 12, 2008 | Indonesian police could use study in mud volcano investigation
JAKARTA (AFP) — Indonesian police are considering using a new study which blames a “mud volcano” on bungled gas drilling as evidence in a criminal investigation into the disaster, a spokesman said Thursday. A study by foreign scientists released this week found the mud volcano in East Java province, which started flowing in 2006, was caused by drilling by oil and gas firm Lapindo Brantas, not an earthquake as argued by the company. More

May 29, 2008 | Victims pray for help after two years of Indonesia’s mud volcano
PORONG, Indonesia (AFP) — Indonesians displaced by the world’s worst mud volcano disaster prayed for help and compensation Thursday beside the sea of sludge that swallowed their homes exactly two years ago. Around 1,000 people from the affected area of Sidoarjo district of east Java gathered beside the stinking slime for a solemn prayer service, seeking deliverance from further eruptions as well as help to rebuild their lives. More

GUARDIAN
May 29, 2008 | Mud volcano ‘on brink of collapse’
The world’s largest mud volcano that has been erupting continuously since 2006 is beginning to show signs of “catastrophic collapse”, according to geologists who have been monitoring it and the surrounding area. The volcano – named Lusi – has already devastated homes and businesses in Sidoarjo, East Java, Indonesia, displacing around 10,000 people and killing 14. More

RADIO AUSTRALIA
May 30, 2008 | Indonesian mud volcano deepens
It’s been exactly two years since Indonesia’s worst ever mud volcano displaced thousands of people on the island of Java. Now there’s new evidence that the volcano is actually collapsing on itself, creating a new series of concerns. More

TIME
February 28, 2008 | A Wound in The Earth
On the morning of June 2, 2006, Ahmad Mudakir, a 33-year-old factory worker from Porong, a sleepy district in eastern Java, was in his front yard tinkering with his motorbike. A little after 8 a.m. he felt a rumbling in the ground — worrying, but not wholly unexpected in this seismically fitful corner of Indonesia. What happened next was anything but expected. Mudakir watched as a neighbor, who had been inside eating breakfast, came tumbling into the street. More

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
January 2008 | Drowning in Mud
By dawn, the trickle that began to seep into the neighborhood during the night had become a scalding torrent. Mud surged into the modest house belonging to Sumitro, who manages a store in the Porong District of East Java. As it smothered furniture and filled rooms, Sumitro and Indayani, his wife, grabbed the kids and fled. “I knew the mud couldn’t be stopped,” he says. “My house was doomed.” More

ASIA TIMES
July 14, 2006 | Muckraking in Java’s gas fields
JAKARTA – On May 27, a natural gas drilling operation in Indonesia’s East Java province got exceptionally messy. Local prospector PT Lapindo Brantas was carrying out routine drilling at the Banjar Panji-1 well located near the town of Sidoarjo, a site that is part of a joint operation known as the Brantas Production Sharing Contract. Burrowing through hot rock almost three kilometers deep, Lapindo’s drill string hit something soft. According to company documents, the resulting drop-off in pressure caused the crew to lose the drill bit in the hole when they tried to raise it up. More

INSIDE INDONESIA
Jan-Mar 2008 | Un-natural disaster
On 28 May 2006, the operators of a well drilling for natural gas in Sidoarjo, 30 kilometres from the centre of Indonesia’s second largest city, Surabaya, reported a ‘blow out’. The explosive outburst of steam and mud—nearly three kilometres below the earth—was not contained and soon hot mud was overflowing from the surface of the well. It started at a rate of about 5000 cubic metres per day. Eighteen months later the estimated daily flow varies from 80,000 to 100,000 cubic metres per day. The mud now covers more than 15 square kilometres. That is enough mud to bury the central business district of a city the size of Adelaide in South Australia to a depth of 13 metres. No one knows when it will stop. More
Voices from the muddy void
Postcards from a wasteland

INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE
January 24, 2007 | Indonesia’s mudflows attributed to drilling
JAKARTA: A mud volcano that has inundated dozens of villages was probably triggered by commercial gas drilling, research published in a respected scientific journal said, contradicting an Indonesian government minister who has insisted that it was a natural disaster. More

December 28, 2006 | Jakarta tells firm to pay in mud leak
JAKARTA: An Indonesian energy company blamed for a mud disaster that left about 10,000 people homeless will have to pay $420 million to the victims and for efforts to stop the toxic flow, the country’s president said Thursday. Entire villages have been inundated by the torrent of mud that has flowed since a drilling accident in May, causing an unfolding environmental disaster in the Sidoarjo area near the city of Surabaya. More

November 23, 2006 | Indonesia gas blast linked to volcanic mud
JAKARTA: A gas pipeline explosion that killed at least seven people in East Java was a consequence of the volcanic mud eruptions that began in the area several months ago, government officials and drilling experts said Thursday.The accident occurred Wednesday because the earth had subsided considerably due to the heavy outflows of mud and water, and a dike that had been built to contain the mud then collapsed on to the pipeline, causing it to rupture, officials said. More

October 6, 2006 | Seeking gas, Indonesians face geysers of mud
KEDUNGBENDO, Indonesia: It started as a natural gas well. It has become geysers of mud and water, and in a country plagued by earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis another calamity in the making, though this one is largely man-made.Eight villages are completely or partly submerged, with homes and more than 20 factories buried to the rooftops. Some 13,000 people have been evacuated. The four-lane highway west of here has been cut in two, as has the rail line, dealing a serious blow to the economy of this region in East Java, an area vital to the country’s economy. The muck has already inundated an area covering one and a half square miles. More

September 28, 2006 | Indonesia’s mud volcano persists, and thousands are homeless as rainy season nears
PORONG, Indonesia Factories that once produced watches and shoes lie under a sea of thick, stinking mud. Villagers stand on hastily constructed dams and gaze at their homes, among thousands swallowed by the brown sludge. More

September 26, 2006 | Indonesia to relocate 3,000 families close to mud flow on Java island
JAKARTA, Indonesia Indonesia will resettle more than 3,000 families whose houses have been swamped by mud surging from a gas exploration site and will dump the sludge into the sea to avoid more destruction, a minister said Wednesday.The mud appeared after an accident occurred deep in a drilling shaft on the seismically charged island of Java. It now covers more than 400 hectares (988 acres) and is currently being contained by an ever-expanding network of dams that are breached almost daily. More

DER SPIEGEL
October 09, 2006 | Eruptions Displace Thousands in Indonesia
It is difficult to imagine that farmers in this part of the Sidoarjo district of East Java were planting rice and sugar cane until just a short time ago. Workers in small factories were producing watches, liquor, furniture and shoes, and the area’s villages consisted of narrow lanes and small houses made of stone, concrete and wood. Residents grew bananas in their backyards and carefully tended small but lush gardens. More

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