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MGB wraps up probe on environmental impact of 4 Zambales mining firms

June 2, 2014 · 

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MGB wraps up probe on environmental impact of 4 Zambales mining firms

Tags: Zambales
A team led by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau is looking into the operations of four nickel miners in Zambales province over complaints from residents who say mining has affected their farms and fishponds.

The multi-disciplinary team conducted a site assessment of Benguet Corporation Nickel Mines Inc., Eramen Mining, Inc., Filipinas Mining Corporation/LnL Archipelago Metals, Inc., and Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation in early May and is expected to submit its report soon.

The team is composed of representatives from the Environmental Management Bureau, Forest Management Bureau, National Irrigation Administration, Ecosystem Research and Development Bureau, Bureau of Soils and Water Management and MGB Regional Office 3.

Representatives of the Concerned Citizens of Sta. Cruz, Zambales (CCSOZ) as well as mining contractors were present at the inspections, which looked into the occurrence of siltation (use of siltation ponds, silt traps and peripheral drainage canals) and the progressive rehabilitation
undertaken in the mining area (slope stabilization and reforestation).

The peripheral facilities of the mines such as the nursery, wash bays and port area were also inspected.

The team also checked water bodies and farmlands allegedly affected by mining operations.

According to bureau director Leo Jasareno, residents of barangays Lipay, Tubo-tubo South and Bolitoc in Sta. Cruz have been complaining of “environmental degradation like destruction of farmlands and fishponds, dusty roads and flooding,” because of the nickel mining in the area.

He said the firms face penalties from the suspension of operations to the cancellation of permits if the team finds basis in the residents’ complaints. — JDS, GMA News

Tags: Zambales
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