Published on July 26th, 2007 | by Noelle dEstries25
Planetsaver Hero of the Day: Turns down $5,000,000,000 (that’s five BILLION) to protect ancestral lands
JEFFREY LEE is not interested in the soaring price of uranium, which could make him one of the world’s richest men.
“This is my country. Look, it’s beautiful and I fear somebody will disturb it,” he says, waving his arm across a view of rocky land surrounded by Kakadu National Park, where the French energy giant Areva wants to extract 14,000 tonnes of uranium worth more than $5 billion.
Mr Lee, the shy 36-year-old sole member of the Djok clan and the senior custodian of the Koongarra uranium deposit, has decided never to allow the ecologically sensitive land to be mined.
“There are sacred sites, there are burial sites and there are other special places out there which are my responsibility to look after,” Mr Lee told the Herald.
“I’m not interested in white people offering me this or that … it doesn’t mean a thing.
“I’m not interested in money. I’ve got a job; I can buy tucker; I can go fishing and hunting. That’s all that matters to me.”
I would love to say that I would make the same decision, but damn- that’s a lot zeros coming after that ’5′. Wowwowweewa. Big props and much respect to Jeffrey Lee.