The Duterte administration allowed several mining companies previously ordered closed by the late secretary Gina Lopez to operate again.
In a text message to Rappler, Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said the following companies were granted approval by the Office of the President (OP) after complying with mining laws:
- Berong Nickel Corporation
- Carrascal Nickel Corporation
- Emir Mineral Resources Corporation
- Strong Built Mining Development Corporation
- Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation
There are 3 more mining companies that have appealed before the OP and are still awaiting approval.
In 2017, Lopez shut down mining firms as a result of an environmental audit.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources reviewed 13 companies, while 14 others were audited by the OP.
Lopez was ejected from her post after failing to get the nod of the Commission on Appointments. Environmental groups pointed to mining companies lobbying for her removal.
In 2018, retired military general Roy Cimatu took over Lopez’s post. He affirmed the suspension of the companies. – Rappler.com