Santiago City—Good practices of Cagayan Valley’s mining companies were recently highlighted in an environment forum sponsored by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Mines and GeoSciences Bureau.
The forum, held at Zen Hotel in this city, featured the JDVC Resource Corp.’s take on offshore responsible magnetite mining practices in Cagayan province, Dinapigue Mining Corp.’s responsible stewardship in Isabela province, FCF Minerals Corp.’s best practice in stakeholders disclosure, and OceanaGold Philippines Inc.’s legacy of responsible mining.
DENR-MGB also presented their updates on technical instruments and other permits, environmental laws, rules and regulations, and its geohazard assessment and mapping project/landslide and flood susceptibility mapping.
However, Nueva Vizcaya Governor Carlos Padilla has criticized both agencies regarding their handling of the mining license renewal of OceanaGold, the gold miner in Didipio in Kasibu town.
In a statement, Padilla said: “In the first place, the MGB and the DENR, these agencies admitted that they failed to put into consideration the body of evidence submitted to them over the past year, citing also the Environment Code of Nueva Vizcaya and the Local Government Code.”
The governor has called on the DENR, speaking directly to Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, to not renew OGPI’s 25-year Financial or Technical Assistance Agreement with the government, which was set to expire last June 20.
The environment forum with the theme “Creating Opportunities to Engage Stakeholders: A Relevant View on Responsible Mining Practices” was attended by stakeholders from the mining industry, academe, local government units, students, civil society organizations, and media practitioners in Cagayan Valley, among others.
Lawyer Antonio Abawag, DENR Regional Executive Director, said the forum aims to forge partnerships between and among various stakeholders for them to become vigilant on various environmental issues and concerns and possible violations of mining companies in the region.
“Let us be vigilant, we need you to monitor them and ensure that mining should be done responsibly. While mining helps our communities and the country’s economy, let us not compromise our environment,” he said.
Abawag added that while mining companies in the region are peforming well, they should be guarded and their violation should be reported to them for proper action.
“If you see that what they are doing is not good for the environment, report them to us and to other concerned agencies so that we can address the properly,” he further said.
The environment forum also tackled issues and concerns of Provincial Mining Regulatory Boards in Cagayan Valley. With Brenda Jocson