President Duterte appoints PRJ columnist Penarroyo as new PRB chairperson for Geology
by Marcelle P. Villegas - July 06, 2022
(Photo: Atty Fernando “Ronnie” S. Penarroyo during the “Oathtaking of Newly Appointed Professional Regulatory Board Members, Professional Regulation Commission” in PICC, Pasay City)
Philippine Resources Journal congratulates our very own columnist, Atty Fernando “Ronnie” S. Penarroyo, for his recent appointment as the new Chairperson for the Professional Regulatory Board for Geology (PRB Geology).
For several years now, Atty Penarroyo has been one of the main contributors in our publication. He specializes in Energy and Resources Law, Project Finance and Business Development.
Through his informative and well-researched editorials in Philippine Resources Journal, he brought light and clarity to many complex issues surround the mining industry. As a notable alumnus of BS Geology and Bachelor of Laws at the University of the Philippines and former President of the Geological Society of the Philippines, Atty Penarroyo guided and mentored many young students in the field of Geology. He also studied at the University of Melbourne in 2001-2002 for his Master of Laws.
In 1988-1989, he earned a Graduate Diploma in Petroleum Exploration, Geological/Geophysical Engineering at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).
Atty Penarroyo studied Management, Petroleum Accounting and Financial Management at the University of Texas at Dallas in 1992.
Then, in 2018, he studied International Nuclear Law Essentials at the National University of Singapore.
He is a licensed Geologist by the Philippine Professional Regulatory Commission since December of 1985. As Chairperson of the PRB Geology, Atty. Penarroyo will recommend measures necessary for advancement of the geology profession.
It was on 4th of March 2022 when President Rodrigo Duterte appointed Atty Penarroyo as the new Chairperson for the Professional Regulatory Board for Geology, replacing the late geologist, Mr Rolando “Rolly” Peña, who passed away on the 30th of November 2018 due to a road accident. Mr Peña is considered one of the most important geologists in the Philippines. He wrote the “Lexicon of Philippine Stratigraphy” (published in 2008), and edited “The Geology of the Philippines” (volumes 1 and 2, Second Edition, published in 2004) These two books are considered the “Bible of geologists” and important in the study of geological history and geo-hazard predictions. 
Atty Penarroyo’s new role as PRB Chairperson offers the opportunity to continue his good friend and former work colleague, Rolly Peña’s legacy in academic excellence in the field of Geology.
On his social media posts last March, Atty Penarroyo stated, “Thank you to the following industry organizations for endorsing my appointment - the National Geothermal Association of the Philippines, Petroleum Association of the Philippines, and Philippine Mining and Exploration Association.”
His position as Chairperson in the PRB will take effect for the next three years.
Naredo Dacanay, Barbara Mae (10 Dec. 2018). "Rolando Peña: Portrait of a rock scientist as a rare gem". ABS.CBN News. Retrieved from - https://news.abs-cbn.com/ancx/culture/spotlight/12/10/18/rolando-pea-portrait-of-a-rock-scientist-as-a-rare-gem
Photo credit: Atty Ronnie Penarroyo
“Rolly Peña: The Revolutionary as a Geologist” (20 Feb. 2020) by Atty Ronnie Penarroyo
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Marcelle P. Villegas - January 12, 2021
President Duterte at the 37th ASEAN Summit
By Marcelle P. Villegas President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his remarks during the virtual plenary session of the 37th ASEAN Summit and Related Summits hosted by the Socialist Republic of Vietnam at the Malacañang Golf (Malago) Clubhouse, Malacañang Park. (Photo credit: King Rodriquez / Presidential photo, Presidential Communications Operations Office website) President Rodrigo R. Duterte attended a virtual summit of world leaders to discuss the COVID-19 pandemic, South China Sea dispute, trade and other issues. The virtual event is the plenary session of the 37th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits hosted by the Socialist Republic of Vietnam that will last until November 25. On his speech, he asserted the Philippines’s arbitral win and emphasised the legal victory is now part of “international law”.  He said, “The Philippine position is clear and firm. We must solve the disputes peacefully and in accordance with international law, including UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea).” “The 2016 arbitral award on the South China Sea is an authoritative interpretation of the application of UNCLOS. It is now part of international law. And its significance cannot be diminished nor ignored by any country, however big and powerful.” President Duterte also emphasised the need to fast-track a “Code of Conduct” in the South China Sea in order to promote peace and stability in the busy waterway. “The Philippines is one with ASEAN in transforming the South China Sea into a sea of peace and prosperity for all. We are committed to the immediate conclusion of a substantive and effective Code of Conduct in the South China Sea. And if I may add, it has been a long time and it is a long wait,” he said. Since President Duterte assumed office in 2016, he addressed the maritime issue with China through a non-adversarial approach. China has an important role in the President’s “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program as they had been providing financial assistance to several major infrastructure projects in the Philippines such as bridges and railways. South China Sea Dispute -- In China’s Nine-dashed Line Map the Philippines loses about 80% of its Exclusive Economic Zone facing the West Philippine Sea. This includes the entire Reed Bank and part of the Malampaya gas field. This loss covers 381,000 square kilometers of maritime space and 100% of the Philippines’ Extended Continental Shelf which covers an estimate of over 150,000 square kilometers of maritime space. South China Sea is also rich in methane hydrate which is a potential source of energy. How did the South China Sea dispute start? Why is the Philippines involved in this conflict with China? On 7 May 2009 when China submitted the Nine-dashed Lines Map to the United Nations. Their map claims large areas of the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and Extended Continental Shelf (ECS) of the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia. On the map, China is claiming 85.7% of the entire South China Sea. Their claim covers 3 million square kilometers out of the 3.5 million square kilometers surface area of the South China Sea. Since China did not provide any legal basis for the dashes, and the dashes also had no fixed coordinates, Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia protested against China’s claim. The Philippines is greatly affected by the Nine-dashed Lines Map because the Philippines loses about 80% of its EEZ facing the West Philippine Sea. This includes the entire Reed Bank and part of the Malampaya gas field. That is around 381,000 square kilometers of loss in maritime space, and 100% of the Philippines’ ECS which covers an estimate of 150,000 square kilometers of maritime space. Therefore, in January 2013, the Philippines formally initiated arbitration proceedings against China’s claim on the territories within the Nine-dashed Lines that includes the Scarborough Shoal. Then, Justice Antonio T. Carpio, former Senior Associate Justice of Republic of the Philippines Supreme Court, defended the Philippines’ right of ownership of the little islands within our territory to the international Arbitral Tribunal. He pointed out our legal rights through legitimate historical records. It was on 12 July 2016 when the Philippines won the arbitration case it filed against China after the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, Netherlands. The verdict invalidated Beijing’s Nine-dashed Lines Map claim on South China Sea. In response, China refused to accept and acknowledge the arbitral ruling. South China Sea is significant not only to Asian countries but also to the world. Each year, US$5.3 trillion ship-borne goods travel through South China Sea. This number is almost one-half of the world’s shipborne trade in tonnage. Additionally, a great percentage of the petroleum imports of South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and China pass through the South China Sea. There are also 2 billion people who live in the 10 countries bordering the South China Sea where hundreds of millions of people depend on fish there for their protein. Lastly, the maritime area that is close to the coast of the countries bordering the South China Sea is rich in oil and gas resources. South China Sea is rich in methane hydrate – a potential source of energy. Reference:  Parrocha, Azer (12 November 2020). Philippine News Agency. “Arbitral ruling can’t be ignored by any country, Duterte to Asean”. Retrieved from https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1121630 Photo credit: President Duterte - https://pcoo.gov.ph/news_releases/asean-must-demand-climate-justice-says-president-duterte/ Nine-Dashed Line - Justice Antonio T. Carpio. “The South China Sea West Philippine Sea Dispute” - https://www.slideshare.net/SamGalope/lecture-the-south-china-sea-west-philippine-dispute-justice-antonio-t-carpio-philippine-social-science-center
Marcelle P. Villegas - April 12, 2023
Geological Society of the Philippines Induction of 2023 Officers
Last 9th of February 2023, The Geological Society of the Philippines (GSP) hosted the "GSP Annual Dinner and Induction Ceremony" at the Celebrity Sports Plaza in Quezon City. This was a hybrid event which highlighted the induction of the 2023 GSP Officers, Board of Trustees, and Committee Chairs. The induction of officers was led by Dr. Carlos Primo C. David, Undersecretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
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Philippine Resources - June 10, 2023
DMCI Mining Targets 1.5 Million WMT Nickel Ore Shipment in 2023
Photo Credit: dmcihouse.net DMCI Mining Corporation is targeting to ship 1.5 million wet metric tons (WMT) of nickel ore in 2023, after its subsidiary Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation (ZDMC) was granted an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) in January to produce 2 million WMT of nickel ore. Prior to the ECC issuance, ZDMC was only allowed to extract 1 million WMT. “We have the necessary facilities and mitigating measures to minimize the impact of our operations on the environment. With these in place, we’re targeting to produce anywhere between 1.7 million to 2 million tons of nickel ore this year,” said DMCI Mining president Tulsi Das C. Reyes. From January to March, ZDMC nickel ore production soared by 88 percent from 318,000 WMT to 599,000 WMT, its highest-ever quarterly output. This led to a 16-percent improvement in total inventory, from 154,000 WMT to 178,000 WMT. However, total shipment declined by 21 percent from 620,000 WMT to 487,000 WMT owing to the depletion of the BNC mine and stockpile, cushioned by the double-digit growth of ZDMC shipment. Average selling price increased by 11 percent from USD44 to USD49 owing to higher Zambales shipments of higher-grade nickel ore. Despite the mine and stockpile depletion of Berong, DMCI Mining standalone revenues narrowly declined (-8%) from P1.4 billion to P1.3 billion due to better selling prices while reported net income contracted by 15 percent from P543 million to P463 million.
Philippine Resources - June 10, 2023
DMCI Power to build wind facility in Semirara Island
Leading off-grid electricity generator DMCI Power Corporation (DPC) is set to build a wind power plant in Semirara Island, home of the biggest coal reserve in the Philippines. DPC intends to finalize the wind power capacity in the coming months, with projections ranging from 8 to 12 MW, and operational implementation expected within 12 to 15 months. The project will be funded and undertaken independently by the company. “We are also looking at solar energy to augment the supply in the island, but we are prioritizing wind resource development because it has shown the most promise,” said DPC president Antonino E. Gatdula, Jr. “Current studies suggest that wind power could potentially deliver a 33% plant utilization rate, compared to just 17% for solar. Capital expenditure per megawatt for both wind and solar projects are also roughly the same,” he explained. In a 2001 wind resource study conducted by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), a United States Department of Energy (DOE) laboratory, it was found that Semirara Island has some of the best wind resources in the Philippines. The wind corridors between Luzon and Panay (including Semirara Islands and extending to the Cuyo Islands) were found to have good-to-excellent wind power density and speed for utility-scale or village power applications. DPC is in the process of validating these wind resource estimates to determine the final location and capacity of its wind project.
Philippine Resources - June 05, 2023
Semirara Mining and Power Corporation eyes Japanese market expansion
Photo credit: Bilyonaryo Integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corporation (SMPC) is set to make its second trial shipment to Japan this June, in a bid to reduce its dependency on the Chinese market. The company will export 50,000 metric tons (MT) of Semirara coal to Shikoku Electric Power Corporation for its 700-megawatt coal fired ultra-supercritical power station. “China is still our main foreign buyer but with their industrial output growing slower than expected, we want to develop other Asian markets like Japan,” said SMPC president and COO Maria Cristina C. Gotianun. From January to March, Semirara coal shipments to China plunged by 50 percent from 2.2 million MT to 1.1 million MT, accounting for 72 percent of exports. South Korea was a steady market at 300,000 MT, representing one-fifth of export sales. The rest of the exports went to Japan (5%) and Brunei (3%). SMPC first made a trial shipment to Japan in January 2023, selling 78,410 MT of mid-grade coal to J-Power, a utility company that operates coal, hydroelectric, wind and geothermal power stations. “For 2023, we are targeting to export around 30 percent of our full-year sales target of 15 to 16 million MT,” added Gotianun. In the first quarter, standalone coal revenues sank by 40 percent from P25.7 billion to P15.5 billion mainly due to high base effect of record production, shipments and selling prices. Standalone reported net income slumped by 51 percent from P14.2 billion to P7 billion on topline weakness and slower decline in cash costs.
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