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MANILA, Philippines – The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) has suspended the nickel mining operations of 4 mining firms in Central Luzon because of unsystematic methods.
Suspended were Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation, Benguet Corporation Nickel Mines Inc., Eramen Minerals Inc., and LNL Archipelago Minerals Inc.
Residents of Sta. Cruz, Zambales have reportedly been complaining of nickel contamination of shores and rice fields as a result of “uncontained” metal.
MGB Director Leo Jasareno said unsystematic strip mining leads to “inefficient recovery of minerals and adverse environmental impacts like siltation and dust generation.”
The companies were ordered to remove all stand-by stockpiles in open cut areas and store these in designated stockpile areas equipped with proper drainage systems.
The firms were also ordered to implement maintenance measures for the duration of their suspension. Compliance reports shall be sent to the MGB regional office.
In separate orders issued on July 15, MGB Region III director Danilo Uykieng also suspended activities for the expansion of the mining areas.
“All environmental protection and enhancement program should be continuously implemented,” Uykieng said.