Landowners in Papua New Guinea have stopped a Chinese nickel miner from dumping millions of tonnes of waste into the sea.
The Chinese-owned Ramu nickel mine in Madang was planning to build an undersea pipeline to dump five million tonnes of tailings a year into Astrolabe Bay.
Coral reefs would have been blasted to make way for the pipeline.
But coastal landowners went to the national court and won an interim injunction putting a stop to the work.
Their lawyer, Tiffany Nongorr, says both the mine and the government have underestimated the potential environmental impact.
“There is a real risk of significant biological impact to the special areas in Astrolabe Bay,” she said.
The parties will return to court as the landowners seek a permanent halt to the pipeline project.