DENR hit for extending Tampakan mine operations

MANILA — Progressive groups were dismayed upon learning that the Mines and Geosciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources gave a green light to Tampakan project to operate for another 12 years.

In a statement, Bayan Muna Rep. Eufemia Cullamat decried MGB’s approval of a 12-year extension of mining operations in Tampakan on June 8, 2016, years before its expiration in March 2020.

Cullamat said the MGB’s decision is contrary to the local government’s ban on open-pit mining. She said residents have rejected open-pit mining due to its negative impact on the environment and on the livelihood of the communities.

Cullamat said the Tampakan project has not filed Environmental Compliance Certificate, a requirement to be given license to operate.

Environmentalist group Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment also frowned at the extension of the mining project. “Tampakan should not have been easily extended with its terms remaining the same when its proposed methodology of open pit mining is banned by local government laws,” the group said.

“More importantly, Tampakan’s continuing lack of social acceptability from LGUs and especially from indigenous Lumad communities should have been basis enough to finally discontinue the mine,” Leon Dulce, Kalikasan-PNE national coordinator, told Bulatlat. (Ronalyn V. Olea/Bulatlat)

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