MGB XI Conducts Information Drive to Municipalities
The Mines and Geosciences Bureau RXI is conducting series of information and education activities to different municipalities in Compostela Valley Province and Davao Oriental.
The main objective is to disseminate information on the recent policies in the mining industry such as the one passed by the present Aquino Administration, the Executive Order 79, highlighting the changes which the present Aquino Administration hopes to infuse into the industry.
Some of the changes emphasized include the expansion of the areas close to mining such as, among others, virgin forests, proclaimed watersheds forest reserves, wilderness areas, mangrove forests, mossy forests, national parks, provincial/municipal forests, tree parks, bird sanctuaries, marine parks, critical watersheds, areas under the National Integrated Protected Areas Systems (NIPAS), prime agricultural lands covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP), plantations devoted to valuable crops, fish refuge or sanctuaries declared by the Department of Agriculture; tourism areas identified by National Tourism Development Plan (e.g. Aliwagwag, Lake Leonard, Mt. Hamiguitan, Mainit National Park, Samal Island, Mt. Apo National Park), island ecosystem such as Samal Island, and other areas that have high biodiversity value to the communities living nearby.
Other points highlighted in the said policy is the governance of Republic Act 7076 over small-scale mining operations which will be undertaken only inside a Minahang Bayan. And as stressed in EO 79, small-scale mining shall not be applicable to metallic minerals except gold, silver and chromite with clear prohibition on the use of mercury.
And as expressed in EO 79, LGUs are directed to confine their issuances of ordinances and resolutions to impositions of reasonable limitations to mining activities in their respective areas that are consistent with the Constitution and national laws.
Edilberto L. Arreza