Advocates Worry That Aquino’s Mining, Environment Agenda Is Similar to Arroyo’s

Privatization of Natural Resources

The groups also criticized Aquino’s plan to revive the Laiban Dam project and other schemes purportedly to solve the current water crisis. “Mr. Aquino is also said to be considering the building of nuclear power plants,” said Bautista.

“The current water crisis is not new and although several administrations implemented privatization schemes, until now majority of Filipinos still have no access to clean and affordable water,” Bautista said.

Bautista also said that “nuclear power is a false solution to the energy crisis.” He said the Philippines is rich in sources of renewable sources of energy that are less costly and risky than nuclear power. “In addition to the environmental risks nuclear plants pose, it will further make the country more dependent on foreign investors and technologies,” he added.

The group challenged Aquino that if he is really sincere in treading the righteous path then he would give in to the demands of the people for a healthy environment and institute national policies that uphold national patrimony.

Kalikasan PNE urged the Aquino government to reverse and scrap the neoliberal government policies and “unequal international treaties” that have led to more wanton extraction, sell-out, privatization and plunder of the country’s natural resources and environment such as the Mining Act of 1995, Japan Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), among others.

Bautista added that as long as these policies are in place and Aquino’s environmental framework is still geared toward the liberalization and privatization of natural resources “then he is most probably anti-people and anti-environment, however he tries to project to be otherwise.”

“The first State of the Nation Address and the past days have been be very revealing of Aquino’s true colors. If he presents an effective environmental platform and if he gives in to the demands of the people in the coming days then our country’s environment may have hope after all. However, if he continues his lackluster performance and continues to avoid addressing fundamental issues, then we can all conclude that Mr. Aquino is just an extension of the previous administration and must be denounced by the people whom he claims to be his ‘boss’,” Bautista said. (

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