DENR: Mining Sector Continues Its Sustainability
Usec Jim O. Sampulna (upper right); Atty. Dante R. Bravo (upper left); Ms. Charmaine Olea-Capili, PNIA Executive Director (lower left); and Engr. Marcial H. Mateo (lower right) during the PNIA webinar via Zoom.
In a webinar titled “Progressive Rehabilitation and Environment Programs during the Pandemic,” Undersecretary Jim O. Sampulna (CESO III) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) stressed the optimism of the government that the mining sector will continue to be sustainable in the midst of the pandemic.
“To the members of the PNIA, and to the rest of other organizations and partners in the mining industry, the government acknowledges that the industry as a whole is facing challenges on how it would sustainably achieve responsible mining in this very unprecedented COVID-19 situation without jeopardizing the highly anticipated benefit from mining and w/o leading into loss of income and job retrenchment,” he said. “However, despite the setbacks and challenges, we believe in your resilience, determination and strength.”
He added, “We are hopeful and confident that the implementation of our respective work and programs for safety and health of the workforce, environmental management and social development which are mandated by our government is still in place and is adapting to our current situation.”
In addition, Sampulna also presented some achievements - despite the pandemic - by some mining sectors in the country. Among them included the Environmental Protection and Enhance Program by Philex Gold Philippines, Inc located in Sibutad, Zamboanga del Norte; Rio Tuba Nickel Mining Corporation (RTNMC) in Bataraza, Palawan; Platinum Group Metals Corporation in Claver, Surigao del Norte; and Coral Bay Nickel Corporation in Bataraza, Palawan. Sampulna also highlighted the environmental activities by PNIA members in Palawan, Zamblaes, and Caraga Region.
Sampulna also gave updates on the establishment of bamboo plantations in mining areas. According to him, the mining sector committed 14,420 hectares of bamboo plantation across the country. This is in accordance with the programs of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources for post-COVID.
Those who attended the webinar included officials from the Philippine Nickel Industry Association (PNIA), Mines and Geoscience Bureau (MGB), and various participants from the academe, private organisations, and other government agencies.