30 mining firms face suspension of permits
Only one in four metallic mines in the Philippines is allowed to continue operations following the latest audit ordered by environment advocate Secretary Regina Lopez.
Environment Undersecretary Leo L. Jasareno said 23 more companies were added to the list of those with permits “recommended for suspension,” for reasons that include siltation of bodies of water and other violations.
They were added to the seven companies whose permits have been suspended before the full-blown audit was started last July.
This means 30 mines need to explain themselves within “seven days, after which a final decision will be made,” Lopez said in a press briefing.
According to Jasareno, the nickel mines that now face suspension of operations accounted for 18 million tons of ore or 55.5 percent of domestic nickel output value that was recorded in 2015.
Also, Jasareno said he could not call the 10 surviving mines as having “passed” the audit. “They also have a number of violations,” he said.
“I will meet with (representatives of) the 10 mines that ‘passed’ at 1 p.m. today,” Lopez said./rga
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