ATM Policy Paper on Mining in the Philippines


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On the Aquino Administration adoption of the Revitalization of the Mining Industry, October 2011

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ATM Policy Paper on Mining in the Philippines

  1. 1. 2011Alyansa Tigil Mina
  2. 2. Prepared by Alyansa Tigil Mina September 2011Photos by Farah Sevilla, Jay Azucena, Denise Fontanilla & Bro. Martin Francisco
  3. 3. Updated  September  2011*SummaryThe   economic   cluster   of   the   Aquino   administration   has   adopted   the   misplaced  policy  of  the  previous  adminsitration  to  revitalize  the  Philippine  industry.    Despite  the   numerous   studies   done   recently   showing   that   mining   has   not   contributed  significantly  to  the  Philippine  economy,  mining  has  been  included  in  the  industrial  priority   list   (Arangkada   2011),   and   the   Medium   Term   Philippine   Development  (ironically,  under  Chapter  10:  Environment  and  Natural  Resources).    It  is  ATM’s  position   that   such   policies   are   inconsistent   with  President   Aquino’s   Social   Contract   with   the  Filipino  People.The   performance   of   the   Philippine   mining  industry  is  dismal.  It  failed  to  deliver  on  its  promises  on   revenues,   investments   and   employment.    Its   contribution   to   the   Philippine   economy   is  relatively   insignificant   compared   to   Agriculture,  Fisheries   and   Forestry.     Adding   tourism   to   the  equation  (whose  operations  are  directly  impacted  by  mining),  then  you  have  an  imbalance.There  are  evidences  that  describe  the  seriousness  of   issues   lodged   against   large-­scale   mining.    These   include   threats   to   gains   in   asset   reform,  physical  displacement  and  cultural  dislocation  of  indigenous   peoples,   destruction   of   biodiversity,  inconsistency   with   the   new   laws   on   climate  change   and   disaster   risk   reduction,   escalation   of   Alyansa Tigil Mina   1
  4. 4. social  conflicts  and  human  rights  violations,  undermining  of  local  autonomy,  weak  governance  and  regulatory  mechanisms,  and  the  myth  of  responsible  mining.  These  threats  are  more  than  enough  to  counter-­balance  the  claimed  benefits  of  large-­scale  mining,  and  will  possibly  result  in  negative  net  benefits  to  the  communities  and  the  country.  The  proposal   to  stop  mining  operations   in   protected   areas   is   a   welcome  initiative.  However,  it  is  easy  to  legally  comply  with  this,  because  National  Integrated  Protected  Areas  System  Law  (NIPAS  or  RA  7586)  defines  “protected  areas”  as  those  declared  by  the  President  or  Congress.    We  argue  that  there  is  mining  in  areas  of  high  biodiversity,  critical  watersheds  and  natural  forests,  that  have  not  been  declared  by  the  President  or  Congress,  and  thus  are  not  legally  defensible  if  such  an  Executive  Order  will  be  pushed.ATM   recommends   that   the   Aquino   administration   drops   the   policy   on   mining  revitalization   and   immediately   revoke   Executive   Order   270-­A.     The   government  must  also  adopt  a  “Cost-­Benefit  Analysis”  in  all  mining  projects.    In  the  absence  of  such,  certain  areas  of  the  Philippines  must  be  declared  as  “No-­Go  Zones”.    Enforcing  the  Mining  Act  of  1995  has  been  problematic,  and  given  its  inherent  flaws,  a  new  minerals   management   law   must   be   enacted.     A   rational   and   needs-­based   mineral  policy  must  be  put  in  place  in  the  interim,  anchored  on  a  National  Industrialization  Plan.    In  all  cases,  the  rights  of  indigenous  peoples,  just  and  equitable  sharing  of  benefits,  and  the  principles  of  local  autonomy  must  always  be  protected  and  upheld.    Finally,  the  government  must  ensure  that  transparency  and  accountability  are  firmly  embedded  in  the  mining  industry  and  govenment  agencies.    2       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  5. 5. The current policy and its claimed basisThe  Philippine  Mining  Act  of  1995  (RA  7942)  is  the  national  legislation  regulating  the   mining   industry   in   the   Philippines.     EO   270-­A   was   signed   last   September  2004,  establishing  the  revitalization  of  the  Philippine  mineral  industry.    In  effect,  the   Philippine   government   has   shifted   its   policy   from   “tolerance”   to   “aggressive  promotion”   of   the   mining   industry.     Thirty-­two   (32)   priority   large-­scale   mining  projects   have   been   pipelined   since   then,   aside   from   more   than   two   thousand  applications  for  mining  contracts  and  exploration  permits.    Relatedly,  government  has  put  its  support  to  the  mining  industry  in  terms  of  i)  fast-­tracking  the  application  and   permission   process,   ii)   watering   down   the   consent   process   for   indigenous  peoples,   iii)   weakening   local   autonomy   of   local   governments   to   resist   or   oppose  the  entry  of  large-­scale  mining  in  their  territories,  and  iv)  highlighting  mining  as  a  priority  in  the  Medium  Term  Philippine  Development  Plan  (MTPDP:  2004-­2010).The   Arroyo   administration   based   this   policy   shift   on   the   claimed   economic  benefits   dangled   by   the   mineral   industry.     There   was   pervasive   belief   in   the  previous  administration  that  a  revitalized  mining  industry  will  bring  in  significant  investments,  emplyment  and  revenues.  The  promises  have   included   i)   US$5-­7   billion   dollars   in   foreign  exchange   generation,   ii)   Php5-­7   billion   pesos   in  excise   tax   colletion,   iii)   239,000   indirect   and   direct  employment,  and  iv)  US$4-­6  billion  dollars  worth  of  investments.  The   Department   of   Environment   and   Natural  Resources   (DENR)   has   been   confronted   with   a  conflicting   role.     On   one   hand,   its   main   task   is   to  ensure   conservation,   protection   and   rehabilition   of  biodiversity   areas.     However,   it   is   also   expected   to  manage  and  regulate  utilization  of  natural  resources  and  is  required  to  implement  the  mining  policies.    Amidst   the   backdrop   of   an   attempt   to   sell   the   idea  of  “sustainable  mining”,  the  Philippine  government  equipped   the   mining   revitalization   policy   with   the  National  Minerals  Action  Plan  (NMAP).    Through  the  NMAP,  the  Philippine  mining  industry  was  depicted  as   compliant   with   the   sustainable   development  framework   by   identifying   social   development,   environmental   mitigation   and  economic  benefits  as  a  convergence  framework.    However,  as  international  opinion  was   consistently   debunking   the   concept   of   “sustainable   mining”,   the   Philippine  government  had  to  fall  back  on  the  concept  of  “responsible  mining”.    Responsible   Alyansa Tigil Mina   3
  6. 6. mining,  as  showcased  by  the  Chamber  of  Mines  of  the  Philippines  (COMP)  espoused  “best  practices”  reflecting  the  key  elements  of:  i)  compliance  with  the  principles  of  sustainable  development,  ii)  built-­in  protection  for  indigenous  peoples,  iii)  ensuring  shared   benefits   of   mining   to   major   stakeholders,   and   iv)   compliance   with   strict  environmental  and  social  provisions.Performance of the revitalized mining policyIn  a  Philippine  Institute  for  Development  (PIDS)  discussion  paper,  it  stated  that  in  an  18  year  period  (1990-­2008),  the  percent  share  of  Employment in the Mining andQuarrying Sector to Employment in All Industries  never  went  higher  than  0.65%.    The  highest  figure  was  recorded  in  1990.    In  the  same  period,  the  total employmentin mining and quarrying  in  any  given  year  never  exceeded  more  than  160,000.1    It  is   important   to   note   that   these   figures   capture   both   mining   and   quarrying.     It   is  logical   to   expect   that   if   only   figures   for   quarrying   were   not   factored   in,   the   total  number  of  employment  for  mining  alone,  would   be   significantly   lower.   The   same  paper   found   that   the   knowledge   base   of  the   country   needed   to   pursue   national  industrialization   strategy   is   poor.   It  concluded   that   “judging   by   experience,  the   search   for   national   industrialization  in  the  mining  sector  would  be  a  difficult…  However,   [this]   should   not   prevent   the  country   from   attempting   once   again  especially   given   the   importance   of  industrialization   to   the   growth   of   the  economy.”2The  gross  production  value  in  mining  rose  from  US$568.7  million  in  2001,  to  a  high  of  US$912.4  million  in  2005.  However,  total   payments   to   government   during   this   period   averaged   only   4.64   %   of   gross  production  value  –  in  stark  contrast  to  the  statements  referring  to  wealth  generation  and   wealth   sharing.     Although   the   production   value   of   mining   rose   steadily   over  the   period,   the   share   going   to   local   government   plummeted   to   0.19   %   of   gross  production  value  in  2005,  and  a  measly  5.5  %  of  the  total  tax  take.  This  is  a  far  cry  from  the  ‘fair’  share  that  the  national  government  has  promised.3 -4       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  7. 7. There  is  evidence  that  undercollection  of   taxes  in  the  mining  industry  was  between   60%   to   80%   from   1997-­2008,   a   period   of   13   years.     It   was   also   observed   that   poor  revenue  collection  from  mining  was   recorded  for  the  period  1997  to  2009.    The   average  revenue  effort  for  the  Philippines   for   the   period   was   15.9%,   and   for   the  mining  industry,  it  was  only  9%!    Collection  of  taxes  at  the  LGU  level  was  also  dismal.    The  average  revenue  collection  from  1997-­2000,  was  only  5%.    From  2001-­2009,  this  average  has  gone  down  to  0.7%!4  In  the  case  of  Marinduque,  Marcopper  Mining  Corporation  has  an   outstanding   balance   of   unpaid  real  property  taxes  for  the  period  of  1980  to  2006  alone  of  more  or  less  ONE  BILLION  PESOS  due  to  the  LGUs  of  Boac,  Mogpog,  Sta.  Cruz,  Torrijos  and  the  province.Despite   the   commitments   in   the  previous   MTPDP   (2004-­2010)   and  the   NMAP,   the   resolution   of   the  Marcopper  mine  tailings  spill,  the  rehabilitation  of  the  Mabatas  Tailings  Dam  and  the  rehabilitation  of  seven  abandoned  legacy  mines  remain  undone.    Serious issues and concerns on the revitalized mining policy   1.   Large-­scale  mining  poses  serious  threats  to  asset  reform  gains.  It  displaced   and  continues  to  displace  indigenous  peoples  from  their  ancestral  domains   under   the   Indigneous   Peoples   Rights   Act   (IPRA   or   RA   8371)   and   small   farmers  under  the  Comprehensive  Agrarian  Reform  Program  (CARP).  In  fact,   the  displacements  of  indigenous  peoples  and  farmers  have  been  heightened.     PhilDHRRA  reported  in  2008  that  more  than  half  of  ancestral  domains  of   indigenous  peoples  are  directly  impacted  by  mining  and  logging  applications   or   operations.     Moreover,   the   study   revealed   that   72%   of   these   extractive   activities   (mining   and   logging)   located   within   ancestral   domains   operate   without   securing   free   prior   and   informed   consent   (FPIC)   from   indigenous   peoples.5 Que- Alyansa Tigil Mina   5
  8. 8.     The   government   have   spent   billions   of   pesos   of   public   and   private   funds   on  the  above  mentioned  asset  reform  program  and  it  is  but  right  to  sustain   the   gains   from   these   programs.   Concerned   government   agencies   in   charge   of   processing   large-­scale   mining   application   should   seriously   consider   it.   Displacement  would  affect  not  only  the  future  of  the  families  displaced  but   also  the  country’s  food  security  and  sovereignty.       Concrete  cases  include  the  resistance  of  farmers  in  Calatagan,  Batangas,  in   the  forced  entry  of  Asturias  Chemical  Industries.    An  estimate  of  more  than   a  hundred  farmers,  working  productively  in  about  500  hectares  of  farmlands,   are  opposing  a  limestone  mining  operations.  These  farmers  are  beneficiaries   of  the  CARP,  and  have  fully  paid  their  amortizations  to  the  Land  Bank.       2.   Mining   negatively   impacts   indigenous   peoples.     Despite   the   safeguards   provided   by   IPRA,   the   IPs   are   marginalized   in   the   fight   against   mining   because  the  free,  prior  and  informed  consent  is  routinely  violated  by  mining   companies.    Cases  of  misinformation,  subtle  bribery,  intimidation  and  even   harassment  have  been  documented.  Even  if  royalty  payments  are  successfully   negotiated,   the   assurance   that   communities   will   receive   equitable   and   just   share  in  these  benefits  are  not  assured.     In  2002  and  2003,  Rodolfo  Stavenhagen,  United  Nations  special  rapporteur   for   the   human   rights   and   fundamental   freedoms   of   indigenous   peoples   visited  the  Philippines  and  reported:  “Of  particular  concern  are  the  long-­term   devastating   effects   of   mining   operations   on   the   livelihood   of   indigenous   peoples   and   their   environment.   These   activities   are   often   carried   out   without   their   prior,   free   and   informed   consent,   as   the   law   stipulates.   Communities   resist   development   projects   that   destroy   their   traditional   economy,   community   structures   and   cultural   values,   a   process   described   as   development   aggression.   Indigenous   resistance   and  protest  are  frequently  countered  by  military   force  involving  numerous  human  rights  abuses,  such  as  arbitrary  detention,   persecution,   killings   of   community   representatives,   coercion,   torture,   demolition  of  houses,  destruction  of  property,  rape,  and  forced  recruitment   by  the  armed  forces,  the  police  or  the  so-­called  paramilitaries.”     In  Oriental  Mindoro,  the  Mangyans  in  the  towns  of  Pola,  Socorro  and  Victoria   are   opposing   the   entry   of   Intex   Mining   Corporation,   a   Norwegian   mining   company.    The  resistance  is  multi-­sectoral,  including  LGUs,  farmers,  fishers,   women,  professional,  the  religious  and  academe.    It  culminated  in  a  hunger  6       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  9. 9. strike   last   November   2009,   that   successfully   revoked   the   Environmental   Compliance  Certificate  (ECC)  of  Intex,  wrongfully  issued  by  the  DENR.  The   proposed   mining   area   was   within   the   ancestral   domains   of   the   Mangyans,   and  they  have  categorically  denied  the  mining  company  their  free,  prior  and   informed  consent.6         Recent  struggles  of  IPs  against  mining  include  the  Palaw’an  tribe  of  Southern   Palawan  versus  mining  company  MacroAsia  Corporation  who  claims  to  have   undergone   the   process   of   free   prior   and   informed   consent,   when   the   real   tribal  warriors  and  leaders  are  publicly  against  mining  in  their  ancestral  land.   (This  is  further  discussed  in  the  next  item.)     Meanwhile,  killings  and  human  rights  abuses  against  anti-­mining  communities   also   continue   to   rise.   Florita   Caya,   General   Manager   of   the   Unified   Tribal   Council  of  Elders  (UTCEL)  was  shot  on  April  27  this  year.  Their  organization,   a   group   of   indigenous   peoples   (Mandaya,   Manobo,   Mangguangan   and   Dibabawon)  in  Monkayo,  Compostela  Valley,  were  engaged  in  protecting  their   ancestral  lands  against  large  scale  mining  and  logging.  UTCEL  members  said   that  prior  to  her  death,  Caya  has  received  threats  urging  them  to  stop  their   activities,  especially  in  their  advocacy  against  mining.   Alyansa Tigil Mina   7
  10. 10.     The   negative   impacts   of   large-­scale   mining  to  indigenous  peoples  were  also   documented   by   a   report   produced   by   the   London-­based   Working   Group   on   Mining   in   the   Philippines   (WGMP).     The   report   stated   that   IPs   “are   particularly   vulnerable   to   the   negative   effects   of   mining.     The   ancestral   domains   of   indigenous   communities   tend   to   be   in   forested   upland   areas,   many   of   which   are   now   targeted   by   mining   corporations.     Stewardship   over   these   lands   is   enshrined   in   oral   history,   myths,   prayers,   and   traditional   laws   that   pre-­date   the   Philippine   state.     These   indigenous   communities   have   traditionally   lived   sustainably   in   the   forest,   but   have   been   displaced   or   are   currently  threatened  with  displacement   by  what  they  call  “development  aggression”  such  as  commercial  logging  and   mining.    The  Philippine  Indigenous  Peoples  Rights  Act  (IPRA)  requires  that   Indigenous  Peoples’  free  and  prior  informed  consent  be  obtained  for  mining   on  their  lands.  However,  manipulation  of  the  FPIC  process,  resulting  in  the   fabrication  of  their  consent,  is  widespread.”7       Last  March  21-­23,  2011,  more  than  150  indigenous  peoples  gathered  in  the   National   IP   Summit.     In   the   Summit   Resolutions,   the   delegates   called   for   the  following:  i)  Repeal  the  Philippine  Mining  Act  of  1995  and  support  the   passage  of  alternative  mining  bills  that  provide  for  the  rational  management   of  minerals  and  uphold  the  right  of  indigenous  peoples;  ii)  Respect  for  the   mining   moratorium   issuances   consistent   with   local   government   autonomy,   iii)  Declaration  of  a  moratorium  on  large-­scale  mining  and  strict  regulation   of   small-­scale   mining;   and   iv)   Prohibition   on   the   use   of   state   forces   in   the   implementation  and  operation  of  mining  projects.8   3.   Large-­scale   mining   poses   risks   to   high   biodiversity   areas,   watershed   areas   and  fragile  small-­island  ecologies.  It  has  also  direct  impacts  on  irrigation  and   agriculture  lands  of  farmers  and  will  contaminate  municipal  waters  and  coastal  8       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  11. 11. areas  under  the  Fisheries  Code.  In  the  Philippines,  most   of   the   mining   and   exploration   concessions   are   located   in   watershed   areas   where   demand   for   waters   exceeds   the   available   supply.   According   to   the   United   States   Environmental  Protection  Agency,  water  contamination   from   mining   poses   one   of   the   top   three   ecological   security  threats  in  the  world.     The  open-­pit  mining  method  will  strip  mountains  and   forests   that   threaten   our   protected   areas.   According   to   HARIBON,   in   2011,   about   60%   of   KBAs,   and   approximately   1/3   of   ancestral   domains   are   directly   overlapping  with  the  23  priority  mining  projects  in  the   country.9     The   current   issue   in   Palawan   is   a   clear   example   of   conflicting   land   use.     Mining   operations   have   already   destroyed   forest   and   coastal   areas,   while   drastically   reducing   agricultural   productivity   of   irrigated   rice   fields.   Additional   mining   applications   will   encroach   in   natural   forests.   This   is   despite   the   status   of   Palawan   as   a   “Man   and   Biosphere   Reserve”   as   declared   by   the   United   Nations   Educational,   Scientific   and   Cultural   Organization  (UNESCO).    Palawan  is  host  to  40%  of   the   country’s   remaining   mangrove   areas,   30%   of   the   country’s  coral  reefs,  has  identified  17  key  biodiversity   areas   (KBAs),   2   world   heritage   sites,   and   8   declared   protected  areas.  49  animals  and  56  plant  species  which   are   globally   threatened   with   extinction—according   to   the   International   Union   for   the   Conservation   of   Nature(IUCN)—are  also  found  in  Palawan.  Palawan  is   so   unique   and   special   that   a   Strategic   Environmental   Plan  (SEP  Law  or  RA  7611)  was  passed  in  1992.10       There  are  also  429  mining  applications  in  Palawan,  with  at  least  two  (2)  large-­ scale  mining  and  several  contiguous  small-­scale  mining  operations.    Aside  from   Rio  Tuba  Nickel  Mining  Corporation  (RTNMC)  operating  in  Bataraza,  two   other  mining  companies  are  planning  to  operate  in  the  towns  of  Brooke’s  Point.   These   are   MacroAsia   Corporation   (MAC),   and   Ipilan   Nickel   Corporation   (INC).  Corporations  such  as  Citinickel,  Berong  Nickel  Corporation  and  other     10   Conservation   International   (CI),   Priority   Sites   for   Conservation   in   the   Philippines:  Key  Biodiversity  Areas,  2006 Alyansa Tigil Mina   9
  12. 12. mining  companies  partnering  with  the  Canadian  MBMI  (under  Financial  or   Technical  Assistance  Agreements  (FTAAs))  represent  an  additional  threat  to   Palawan  forest.  All  these  operations  will  encroach  not  only  on  natural  forests   but  also  on  core  zones  and  protected  areas,  if  we  use  the  original  delineation   of   the   Environmentally   Critical   Areas   Network   (ECAN)   zones   in   Palawan.     What  has  happened  is  that  the  Palawan  Council  for  Sustainable  Development   (PCSD)   has   failed   to   fulfill   its   own   mandate   by   releasing   environmental   clearances   and   exploration   permits   to   mining   corporations   in   “core”   and   “restricted”  areas,  where  any  form  of  extractive  activity  is  strictly  forbidden.       The  indigenous  peoples  (Palaw’an  tribe)  in  Brooke’s  Point  have  never  given   their  consent  to  mining  operations.  Moreover,  the  resolutions  endorsing  the   operations  of  MAC  and  INC  signed  by  the  Sangguniang  Bayan  of  Brooke’s   Point  and  by  the  Sangguniang  Panlalawigan  of  Palawan  bypass  the  decisions   and   sentiments   of   the   majority   of   Brooke’s   Point   Municipality   population.   In  endorsing  the  mining  exploration  of  both  MAC  and  INC,  the  Sangguniang   Bayan   has   acted   in   contradiction   with   its   own   Municipal   Comprehensive   Land  Use  Plan  (CLUP)  for  2000-­2010,  in  which  mining  was  never  considered   as  a  development  strategy.  Also  barangay  governments  have  approved  mining   operations,  bypassing  all  forms  of  consultations  with  their  constituents  and   neglecting   the   important   requirement   of   the   Local   Government   Code   (RA   7160)   with   respect   to   the   duty   of   consulting   local  people  on  any  project  or  program  that  may   cause   pollution,   climate   change,   depletion   of   non  renewable  resources.  The  anti-­mining  stand   and   opposition   to   MAC   and   INC   operations   on   the   part   of   the   residents   of   Brooke’s   Point   Municipality  has  been  made  clear  in  the  course   of   several   rallies   and   peaceful   demonstrations   from  2008  to  2010.   Mining   will   also   have   an   adverse   impact   on   Palawan   tribes’   sacred   and   worship   sites,   which   occupy  a  special  position  in  people’s  cosmology   and   worldview.   Furthermore,   mining   activities   will   destroy   the   resource-­base   on   which   upland   indigenous   communities   depend   for   their   survival,  including  water  sources  and  non-­timber   forest  products.  It  needs  to  be  pointed  out  that   some  of  these  communities  have  limited  contacts   with   the   outside   world,   are   not   listed   in   the   national   census   and   are   particularly   vulnerable   to  diseases  brought  in  my  migrants  and  miners.10       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  13. 13.     Meanwhile,  in  June  2011,  a  group  of  indigenous  peoples  claiming  to  be  leaders   of  the  Palaw’an  tribe  signed  a  free  prior  and   informed  consent  with  MAC.   This  was  when  the  real  elders  (Panglima)  and  tribal  leaders  of  Palaw’an  tribe   sought  the  support  of  Congressman  Teddy  Brawner  Baguilat,  chairperson  of   the  House  Committee  on  National  Cultural  Communities,  and  the  NCIP.  As   of  now,  the  NCIP  has  put  on  hold  its  issuance  of  Certificate  of  Pre  Condition   to  MAC  because  of  issues  that  still  need  to  be  addressed.       In  Mindanao,  the  town  of  Cantilan  Surigao  del  Sur,  is  opposing  the  operations   of  Marcventures  Mining  Development  Corporation  (MMDC).    The  mine  site   is  part  of  a  critical  watershed  area,  declared  by  Pres.  Arroyo  in  2008  under   Presidential   Proclamation   No.   1747.     Aside   from   the   Manobo   indigenous   tribe—who  lay  claim  to  an  ancestral  domain  in  the  area—the  LGU,  organized   farmers,  fisherfolk,  professionals,  the  Catholic  Church  and  even  the  Provincial   Office  of  the  National  Irrigation  Association  (NIA)  has  publicly  opposed  the   mining  operations.         In  November  10,  2010,  the  complainants  filed  an  application  for  temporary   environmental  protection  order  (TEPO)  against  MMDC.  On  that  same  day,   the  Honorable  Court  issued  a  TEPO  “restraining  and  enjoining  the  defendant   from   continuing   its   mining   activities   and   operations   inside   the   Watershed   Forest   Reserves…   covering   the   municipalities   of   Cantilan,   Carrascal,   and   Madrid,  all  in  Surigao  del  Sur,  to  prevent  irreparable  damage  and  injury  to   plaintiffs  and  residents  of  the  said  municipalities  until  further  notice  from  this   Court.”  However,  despite  the  court  order,  MMDC  still  continued  operations   in  the  mining  area.       In   August   17,   2011,   the   Committee   on   Natural   Resources   of   the   House   of   Representatives   conducted   a   hearing   on   the   TEPO.   During   the   hearing,   Alyansa Tigil Mina   11
  14. 14. MMDC   and   Department   of   Environment   and   Natural   Resources—Mines   and   Geosciences   Bureau   denied   having  received  a  copy  of  the   TEPO,   and   said   they   will   implement   it   immediately.   But  despite  this,  MMDC  was   still  able  to  complete  shipment   of   55,600   wet   metric   tons   of   high-­grade   nickel   ore   to   China,   in   August   20,   only   three   days   after   the   House   Committee  hearing.       Another   case   in   point   is   the   Rapu-­rapu   spills   tragedy.   In   October   11   and   29,   2005,   two   spills   occurred   in   the   Rapu-­Rapu   Polymetallic   Project   operated   by   Lafayette   Philippines,   Inc,   in   the   island   of   Rapu-­Rapu,   Albay.     Tones  of  effluent  and  toxic  materials  were  spilled  in  the  creeks  and  coastal   areas   of   Rapu-­Rapu,   causing   fish   kills   and   fish   scare.     An   independent   commission   was   created   by   then   President   Arroyo   to   investigate   the   matter   and  to  make  recommendations.    The  Rapu-­Rapu  Fact-­Finding  Commission   (RRFFC)   stated   that   “the   two   tailings   spill   incidents   were   the   proximate   cause   of   the   health   and   environmental   hazards   in   Rapu-­Rapu   and   coastal   municipalities  of  Sorsogon.”  The  commission  also   commented   that  DENR   has   been   noticeably   consistent   in   allowing   Lafayette   to   violate   especially   the   environmental   protection   requirements   of   its   approved   Environmental   Protection   and   Enhancement   Program   (EPEP).   Among   the   commission’s   recommendation   were:   i)   Investigation   by   the   Bureau   of   Internal   Revenues   (BIR)   on   the   underreporting   of   ore   production   and   violation   of   tax   laws,   ii)   Rescinding   of   economic   and   financial   incentives   to   the   Lafayette   group,   iii)  A  moratorium  on  mining  in  Rapu-­rapu  and  a  suspension  of  MPSAs  in   the  island  pending  scientific  and  experts’  favorable  resolution  of  the  issue  of   ecological  conservation  and  the  acid  mine  drainage  problem  in  a  fragile  small   island  ecosystem,  iv)  Cancellation  of  the  ECC  of  the  mining  project,  and  v)   Review  of  the  Philippine  Mining  Act  (RA  7942)  specifically  the  provisions  on   the  ownership  and  management  of  mining  firms  and  operations  to  protect   the  interest  of  the  Filipino  people  and  the  Philippine  government.  11    To  date,   none  of  these  recommendations  have  been  adequately  acted  on.   4.   The  policy  on  large-­scale  mining  is  inconsistent  with  the  new  laws  on  climate  12       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  15. 15. change   (Climate   Change   Act   or   RA   9729)   and   disaster   risk   reduction   (Disaster   Risk   Reduction   Law   or   RA   10121).     The   mining   industry  is  a  direct  contributor  to  deforestation.     The  GHG  emmissions  of  the  mining  industry  is   not  accounted  for,  and  their  demand  for  energy   will   exponentially   increase   these   emmision   figures.       Caution   must  be   observed   regarding   the  Philippines  incompatibility  to  accommodate   large-­mining   operations,   given   its   geography   and   topography   and   poor   regulatory   regime.     The   country   is   also   prone   to   mining   disasters   and  other  environmental  problems.    Based  on   the  data  compiled  by  Newsbreak,  10  out  of  24   mining   comnpanies   with   projects   included   in   the   priority   list   of   the   Philippine   government   were  involved  in  mining  accidents  or  were  the   subject   of   pollution   investigation   for   the   past   two  decades.12       The   Philippines   has   already   experienced   environmentally   devastating   mining   disasters   such   as   the   1996   Marcopper   tragedy   in   Marinduque   (the   6th   worst   mining   disaster   in   the   world),   which   killed   marine   life   in   the   26-­kilometer   waterway   and   flooded   farmlands   and   villages   along   its   banks,   leaving   a   clean-­ up   cost   of   US$80   million.   The   combination   of   risks   involved   in   mining   operations   and   unpredictable   bad   weather   (such   as   strong   typhoons)  will  be  a  double  whammy  of  catastrophes  waiting  to  happen  that   will  cost  not  just  environmental  sabotage  but  worst,  cost  human  lives.       Mining  impacted  communities,  due  to  the  losses  of  forests  and  other  natural   barriers   to   typhoons,   are   also   the   most   vulnerable   to   hydro-­meteorological   hazards.  Any  investment  by  the  local  and  national  government  for  sustainable   development,   millennium   development   goals,   poverty   alleviation,   and   even   Alyansa Tigil Mina   13
  16. 16. infrastructures   can   be   easily   wiped   out   by   a   single   bursting   of   a   mining   dam  such  as  Tapian  Pit  in  Marinduque,  which  is  a  continuing  threat  to  the   safety  of  more  than  50,000  inhabitants  in  the  low-­lying  villages.  Worst,  the   contaminated   mine   tailings   will   destroy   all   the   biota   of   Tablas   Strait,   the   common  waters  of  Romblon,  Mindoro,  Marinduque,  Batangas,  and  Quezon   provinces,  which  is  also  part  of  the  Verde  Island  Pass  Marine  Corridor,  the   “center  of  the  epicentre  of  the  marine  biodiversity  of  the  world.”   5.   Social   conflicts,   human   rights   violations   and   killings   in   mining-­hosted   communities  have  escalated.  Human  rights  violations  have  been  documented,   and   one   case   has   even   been   elevated   and   discussed   already   at   the   UN   Commission   on   the   Elimination   of   Racial   Discrimination   or   UNCERD.     In   August   2009,   two   Subanon   leaders   –   Timuay   Boy   Anoy   and   Timuay   Noval  Lambo  –  were  heard  by  UN  officials,  because  of  the  complaint  filed   by   the   Subanon   against   Canada-­based   mining   company   Toronto   Ventures,   Incorporated  (TVI).  To  date,  T VI  has  been  forced  to  recognize  the  legitimacy  of   Timuay  Boy  Anoy’s  leadership,  but  the  full  implementation  of  the  UNCERD   recommendation  has  not  been  accomplished  by  the  Philippine  government.       Last  January  10,  2011,  the  Commission  on  Human  Rights  issued  its  resolution   on   the   complaint   of   farmers   and   indigenous   peoples   against   Oceana   Gold   Philippines,  Inc.  (OGPI).    The  CHR  established  that:  i)  OGPI  violated  the   right  to  residence,  the  right  to  adequate  housing  and  property  rights  of  several   residents  in  (barangay)  Didipio  (Kasibu,  Nueva  Vizcaya);  ii)  OGPI  violated  the   right  to  freedom  of  movement  and  the  right  not  to  be  subjected  to  arbitrary   interference  with  the  home  of  the  people  in  Didipio;  iii)  OGPI  violated  the   right  to  security  of  persons  of  the  people  in  Didipio;  iv)  OGPI  violated  the   indigenous  community’s  right  to  manifest  their  culture  and  identity;  v)  OGPI   must  exercise  great  caution  in  exploiting  the  water  resource  of  Didipio,  possibly   endangering  the  community’s  fundamental  right  to  access  to  clean  water;  and   vi)   the   PNP   violated   its   own   operational   procedures   during   the   October   2   incident   carrying   high-­powered   firearms   and   by   applying   unnecessary   and   unreasonable  force.13         The   CHR   resolution   has   recommended   that   the   government   withdraw   the   FTAA  granted  to  the  foreign  company  (OGPI)  in  view  of  the  gross  violations   of  human  rights  it  has  committed.     As  of  April  2011,  at  least  seven  (7)  anti-­mining  activists  have  sacrificed  their  lives   in  defense  of  their  land  and  natural  resources.    In  October  3,  2007,  Councilor   Armin  Marin  from  San  Fernando,  Sibuyan  Island  (Romblon)  was  shot  dead   -14       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  17. 17. while  leading  a  mobilization  against  the  entry  of  workers  from  Sibuyan  Nickel   Properties   Development   Corporation   (SNPDC).     In   December   23,   2008,   Fernando  Sarmiento,  Chairperson  of  Panalipdan-­Southern  Mindanaon  was   killed.    He  was  leading  the  local  organizations  against  the  exploration  activities   of   PhilCo   Mining   Corporation   in   Compostella   Valley.     In   March   9,   2009,   Eliezer  “Boy”  Billanes  was  shot  dead  at  the  public  market  of  Koronadal  City   in  South  Cotabato.    He  was  a  leading  figure  against  the  mining  operations  of   Xstrata-­Sagitarious   Mines,   Inc   in   Tampakan,   South   Cotabato.     In   February   10,   2010,   Barangay   Captain   Ricardo   Ganad   from   Poblacion   3,   Victoria,   Oriental  Mindoro  was  shot  dead.    Ganad  was  President  of  the  Association   of   Barangay   Captains   (ABC)   in   Victoria,   and   the   most   outspoken   critic   of   mining   in   the   province.   In   March   1,   2010,   Gensun   Agustin   from   Buguey,   Cagayan   Valley,   was   shot   dead   while   riding   his   motorcycle,   on   his  way  back  home  from  a  forum   where   they   discussed   strategies   on   how   to   strengthen   the   anti-­ mining  movement  in  their  area.     In   January   24,   2011,   Dr.   Gerry   Ortega,  broadcaster,  veterinarian   and   environmentalist,   was   shot   dead   in   Puerto   Princesa   City,   Palawan.     Aside   from   being   a   project   manager   of   the   Bantay-­ Kalikasan   of   the   ABS-­CBN   Foundation,   he   was   also   a   staunch   critic   of   the   on-­going   mining   projects   in   Palawan.   Lastly,  indigenous  leader  Nang  Florita  Caya,  who  was  shot  at  the  back  of  her   head  in  April  27,  2011,  instantly  killing  her.       These   are   just   some   of   the   documented   extra-­judicial   killings   and   human   rights   violations   committed   against   activists   environmentalists   who   have   passionately  opposed  destructive,  large-­scale  mining  in  the  Philippines.   6.   Weakening   of   local   autonomy.     As   of   March   30,   2011,   at   least   twenty-­two   (22)  local  government  units  have  passed  ordinances,  resolutions  and  executive   orders  opposing  the  entry  or  declaring  a  moratorium  on  mining  operations  in   their  territories.    The  most  notable  ones  include  the  i)  Provincial  Environment   Code  of  the  Province  of  South  Cotabato  which  has  a  ban  on  open-­pit  mining,   ii)   the   Provincial   Resolutions   of   the   two   Mindoro   provinces   (Oriental   and   Occidental),   which   put   a   25-­year   moratorium   on   any   large-­scale   mining   operations,  and  iii)  Provincial  resolution  of  Marinduque  declaring  a  50-­year   Alyansa Tigil Mina   15
  18. 18. moratorium  on  mining.    Other  LGUs  with  similar  measures  include  the  three   Samar   provinces,   the   three   municipalities   of   Sibuyan   island   in   Romblon,   towns  in  Davao  Oriental,  Province  of  Iloilo,  Puerto  Princesa  City,  Tacloban   City,  Zambales,  Bulacan  and  Quezon.    The  DENR  and  the  Chamber  of  Mines   have   erroneously   portrayed   this   as   defiance   of   local   governments   against   a   national   policy.     It   may   be   more   accurate   to   describe   this   as   a   dissonance   between  the  implementation  of  two  national  laws—the  Philippine  Mining  Act   of  1995  and  the  Local  Government  Code  of  1991.   7.   There   are   weak   regulatory   and   governance   mechanisms   in   the   mineral   industry.     The   DENR   does   not   have   enough   technical   and   personnel   capacities   to   adequately   address   the   rigorous   demands   of   the   mineral   industry.     There   is   no   effective   “Cost-­Benefit   Analysis”   that   will   determine   the  best  use  of  the  land.  In  this  absence,  there  is  little  evidence  that  the  “net   effect”   of   the   mining   industry   will   be   positive   for   the   Philippine   economy,   let   alone   contribute   to   poverty   reduction.   The   Philippines   does   not   have   a   National   Industrialization   Plan.   The   downstream   industry   of   minerals   and   metals  is  practically  undeveloped,  with  no  blueprint.    The  Corporate  Social   Responsibility  framework  of  the  Chamber  of  Mines  continues  to  be  a  work   in   progress,   while   the   destruction   of   biodiversity,   cultural   displacement   of   indigenous  peoples  and  escalation  of  social  conflicts  in  mining  areas  pursue.       8.   The  myth  of  “responsible  mining”.    The  global  and  local  mining  industry   suffered  from  the  backlash  of  its  attempt  to  re-­package  itself  as  “sustainable   mining”.     Environmental   groups,   human   rights   groups,   think-­tanks   and   IP   support   groups   exposed   this   “re-­labeling”   approach.     Consequently   finding   itself  unable  to  respond,  the  mining  industry  had  to  contend  itself  with  the  16       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  19. 19. branding   of   “responsible   mining”.     The   framework   of   responsible   mining   is   drawn   from   the   so-­called   ‘best   practices’   of   various   mining   operations   happening   simultaneously   in   different   countries.   BUT   this   model   has   not   been  successfully  closed  or  “looped-­in”  in  one  single  operation  in  a  specific   area.  Moreover,  no  large-­scale  mining  operation  has  completed  the  whole  cycle   of  the  model  yet.  ATM  believes  that  the  concept  of  responsible  mining  is  a   weak  model,  because  it  a)  relies  on  voluntary  compliance  of  large-­scale  mining   companies;  b)  highly  depends  on  the  ability  of  the  government  to  enforce  and   implement   the   safeguards   articulated   in   national   laws   and   policies;   c)   does   not  address  the  issue  of  corporate  and  state  graft  and  corruption,  a  scenario   that  is  not  totally  insulated  in  the  extractive  industries;  and  d)  there  is  token   recognition   of   safeguards   (participatory   process,   free   prior   and   informed   consent,   Environmental   Impact   Assessment).     Furthermore,   the   industry’s   track  record  has  earned  enormous  social  distrust,  which  does  not  adhere  to   the  elements  of  ‘responsible  mining’,  and  there  are  evidences  that  such  illegal,   sub-­standard,   unethical,   dirty   and   unsustainable   practices   in   the   mining   industry   continue,   despite   the   effort   to   peddle   the   concept   of   “responsible   mining”.Alyansa Tigil Mina   17
  20. 20. POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS   1.   The   new   MTPDP   (2011-­2016)   must   drop   the   priotization   of   revitalizing   the   mineral   industry.     EO   270-­A   (Revitalization   of   the   Philippine   Mining   Industry)  must  be  revoked  immediately.    Chapter  10  of  the  MTPDP  is  a  failure   in   participatory   processes,   when   the   CSO   inputs   on   the   very   controversial   mining   issues   were   watered   down,   re-­phrased   neutrally   or   even   outright   deleted  in  whole  paragraphs.    Numerous  studies  have  showed  that  mining  has   not   contributed   significantly   to   economic   growth   in   terms   of   tax   revenues,   substantial  investments,  or  employment.    It  has  too  many  incentives,  and  is   suffering   from   tax   undercollection   and   uneven   distribution   on   benefits   to   major  stakeholders,  even  among  government  agencies.         In   fact,   it   is   not   difficult   to   trace   that   there   are   strong   inconsistencies   in   the  new  MTPDP  when  mining  is  overlaid  with  the  policy  to  push  for  rural   development.    Mining  will  not  bring  “inclusive  growth”  as  indigenous  peoples   access   to   their   ancestral   domains   and   natural   resources   are   constrained,   human  rights  are  violated,  biodiversity  destroyed,  local  autonomy  is  weakened   and  graft  and  corruption  left  unattended.    Finally,  revitalization  of  the  mining   industry  goes  against  Points  #  15  and  16  of  the  President’s  Social  Contract  to   the  Filipino  people.18       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  21. 21.   2.   The  government  must  adopt  a  policy  of  “the  whole  Philippines  is  not  open   to   mining,   unless   certain   conditions   (e.g.,   asset   reform,   social   justice,   cost-­ benefit  analysis,  etc.)  reveal  that  extracting  the  mineral  is  the  best  use  and  most   economically  beneficial  option.    There  are  several  areas  in  the  Philippines  –   given  their  topography,  geo-­hazard,  fragile  ecology,  economic/productive  use,   cultural  value  or  current  land  use  –  are  not  suitable  or  even  directly  in  conflict   with   mining.     For   large-­scale   mining   to   pursue,   a   Cost-­Benefit   Analysis   (CBA)   must   be   completed   for   all   current   mining   projects   and   new   mining   applications.    The  CBA  must  take  into  account  all  factors  that  will  be  affected   by  the  mining  project,  including  ecological  services,  cultural  and  social  values,   just   compensation,   and   reasonable   comfort.     Unless   the   CBA   shows   a   net   positive  impact,  the  mining  contract  must  either  be  withdrawn  or  reviewed.         In  the  interim,  the  government  must  declare  several  areas  in  the  Philippine   territory  as  “No-­Go  Zones”  for  mining  and  other  extractive  industries.    The   basis  and  justifications  for  such  declarations  are  i)  embedded  in  several  national   laws,   ii)   reflected   in   international   treates   and   multi-­lateral   environmental   agreements   that   the   Philippines   have   acceded   to,   and   iii)   initiative   or   concurrence  of  local  governments.         3.   The  current  Philippine  Mining  Act  of  1996  (RA  7962)  is  f lawed,  given  that  its   conflicts  or  inconsistencies  with  other  laws  is  clearly  manifested.    Enforcement   issues  and  weak  governance  and  regulatory  mechanisms  are  pervasive.    A  new   mineral  management  law,  that  promotes  a  balance  of  mining  implementation   with  other  laws  (IPRA,  NIPAS,  LGC,  AFMA,  EIA/EIS,  Climate  Change  Act,   etc.),   must   be   enacted.   The   government   must   certify   the   pending   bills   on   Alyansa Tigil Mina   19
  22. 22. mining  in  Congress  as  urgent  (HB  207  and  HB  3673).    The  new  mining  law   must  ensure  that  the  conservation  of  non-­renewable  mineral  resources  is  for   the  benefit  of  both  present  and  future  generations  of  Filipinos.  This  can  be   done  by  adopting  a  sustainable,  rational,  needs-­based  minerals  management   policy,  geared  towards  effective  utilization  of  mineral  resources  for  national   industrialization  and  modernization  of  agriculture.   4.   As   the   findings   of   several   researches   reveal,   too   much   risk   and   negative   impacts  are  being  introduced  by  the  current  policy  on  aggressively  promoting   large-­scale  mining.  It  is  not  enough  that  mining  applications  are  suspended.  A   moratorium  on  large-­scale  mining  operations  must  be  immediately  imposed   so  that  carrying  capacities  of  ecologies  can  be  improved.  Permits  for  pending   applications  must  not  be  issued,  and  all  large-­scale  mining  operations  that  have   questionable  circumstances  (resistance  of  communities,  opposition  of  LGUs,   flawed  procedures,  etc.),  must  be  immediately  suspended  and  reviewed.         Government   must   immediately   act   on   recent   recommendations   and   resolutions  that  are  directly  related  to  large-­scale  mining:     i)   Commission  on  Human  Rights  (CHR)  resolution  last  January  10,  2011,   on  human  rights  violations  of  Oceana  Gold  Philippines,  Inc.  (OGPI)   and  the  recommended  withdrawal  of  the  mining  contract;     ii)   The   recommendation   of   the   Rapu-­Rapu   Fact   Finding   Commission   (RRFFC)  last  August  2006,  recommending  the  withdrawal  of  the  ECC   and  suspension  of  the  MPSA  of  the  Rapu-­Rapu  Polymetallic  Project  in   Rapu-­Rapu,  Albay;  20       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  23. 23.   iii)   Revocation   of   the   ECC   of   Intex   Mining   Corporation   in   Oriental   Mindoro,  issued  by  DENR  last  November  2009;     iv)   Recommendations   of   the   UN   Commission   on   the   Elimination   of   all   forms   of   Racial   Discrimination   (UNCERD)   issued   last   October   2009   and   reitereated   last   August   2010,   to   ensure   the   protection   and   promotion  of  the  rights  of  indigenous  peoples;     v)   Temporary  Environmental  Protection  Orders  (TEPOs)  issued  by  courts   and  writs  of  kalikasan  granted  by  courts.   5.   The  principles  of  local  autonomy  must  be  respected.    LGUs  who  have  passed   resolutions  and    ordinances  banning  mining  or  issuing  moratoriums  against   mining   in   their   localities   must   be   respected   and   upheld.     The   Department   of  the  Interior  and  Local  Government  and  the  Department  of  Justice  must   review  and  upgrade  their  position  that  a  “2-­out-­of-­3”  ruling  of  LGUs  giving   permission   is   equivalent   to   “consent”   or   endorsement   of   the   LGU.     Both   should  be  regarded  as  what  they  are  –  “opinions”.    Sec.  26  and  27  of  the  Local   Government  Code  (LGC)  must  be  absolutely  respected,  where  it  states  that   ALL   LGUs   to   be   affected   by   national   development   projects   (including   mining)  must  give  their  consents.   6.   Should  the  government  decide  to  retain   its   misplaced   policy   of   aggressively   promoting   large-­scale   mining,   several   structural  and  policies  must  be  put  in   place,   prior   to   granting   of   application   permits   and   actual   mining   contracts.     These  include:   6.a   Finalization   of   a   National   Industrialization   Plan,   that   will   indicate  the  actual  minerals  and   metal  needs  of  the  country,  that   will  contribute  to  the  realization   of  this  industrialization  plan.   6.b   Complete   an   accurate   and   realistic   inventory   of   the   actual   mineral   reserves,   pin-­pointing   the   specific   locations,   types   and   values   of   the   minerals,   that   will   be  potentially  extracted. Alyansa Tigil Mina   21
  24. 24.   6.c   Produce  a  mineral  extraction  plan  that  will  respond  to  the  actual  needs   specified  in  the  National  Industrialization  Plan,  while  considering  the   other   alternative   (and   more   beneficial)   uses   of   the   targeted   mineral   lands.   7.   The  government  must  sign-­up  to  the  Extractive  Industry  Transparency  Initiative   (EITI),  in  order  to  practice  and  implement  transparency  and  accountability  of   mining  companies  operating  here  in  the  Philippines.       8.   An   EO   must   be   issued   by   the   President   not   to   allow   mining   operations   in   areas  that  are  scientifically  identified  as  important  biodiversity  areas  (IBAs),   watershed  areas  and  natural  forests.  These  areas  are  aside  from  the  protected   areas  system  already  covered  by  NIPAS.    The  EO  must  also  include  provisions   that  consent  of  LGUs  and  IPs,  whenever  applicable,  that  are  of  paramount   requirements  before  mining  is  permitted.   9.   The  government  should  demonstrate   its   capacity   to   uphold   the   right   of   the   people   to   a   balanced   ecology   by   ensuring   to   expedite   the   prosecution   of  all  cases  related  to  large-­scale  mining   incidents   such   as   the   Marcopper   tragedy  of  1996  in  which  all  cases  filed   in   relation   thereof   have   not   reached   even  the  trial  stage  15  years  after.22       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  25. 25. Alyansa Tigil Mina   23
  26. 26. ATM Assessment of PNoy 1st YearThis   assessment   attempts   to   assess   the   performance   of   the   PNoy   administration  in  its  first  year  in  relation  to  the  issue  of  large-­scale  mining.    A  10-­point  indicator  system   is   used   as   a   barometer   to   determine   the   success   or   failure   of   the   Aquino  government  in  addressing  the  key  concerns  revolving  the  revitalization  of  the  mining  industry  in  the  Philippines.    The  indicator  system  is  a  combination  of  reviewing  the  administration’s  responses  and  delivery  of  commitments,  along  the  lines  of  1)  the  main  calls  of  the  ATM  campaign;  2)  the  initial  set  commitments  of  the  DENR  under  Sec.  Ramon  Paje;  3)  introduction  of  reforms  in  key  government  agencies  and  offices  directly  related  to  mining  issues;  and  4)  the  different  scenarios  unfolding  in  key  sites  of  struggles  within  the  ATM  campaign.    The  matrix  below  presents  the  indicators  and  a  brief  explanation  of  the  parameters  in  the  assessment  exercise. 1.   Scraping  of  the  Mining   Act  of  1995  (RA  7942)  and   enactment  of  a  new  mining   law 2.   3.   Mining on  mining 4.   Enact  the  Alternative  Minerals  Management  Bills!24       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  27. 27. 5.   6.   7.   b.   Arangkada  2011 8.   of  mining 9.   10.  As  with  other  assessments  of  other  sectors  on  the  performance  of  the  first  year  of  the  PNoy  administration,  it  is  critical  that  the  policies  and  actions  of  the  previous  government  be  used  as  reference.  The   GMA   administration   shifted   the   government   policy   from   “tolerance“   to  “aggressive  promotion“.  This  led  to  the  streamlining  of  mining  applications  process,  and  the  increased  number  of  approved  mining  contracts.    In  turn  this  resulted  in  amplified  social  issues,  as  indigenous  peoples  were  physically  and  culturally  displaced  and   the   key   biodiversity   areas   of   the   countries   were   directly   threatened.     Social  tensions   also   escalated,   as   local   communities,   including   many   local   government  units,  mounted  strong  resistance  against  the  entry  or  expansion  of  mining  projects.    On   the   other   hand,   the   asset   reform,   social   justice   and   sustainable   development  tracks  of  government  was  effectively  set  aside.  Upon  assumption  of  the  Aquino  administration,  mining  activists,  together  with  the  broader  environmental  movement,  held  on  to  high  expectations  for  reforms.    This    expectation  has  since  then  been  downgraded  to  “guarded  optimism“  after  the  first  year  of  PNoy’s  government.   Alyansa Tigil Mina   25
  28. 28. Several  bills  on  mining  have  been  filed  with  the  15th  Congress.    These  are  HB  206  (Alternative  Mining  Bill),  HB  3763  (Philippine  Mineral  Resources  Act)  and  HB  4315  (People’s  Mining  Bill).    Despite  significant  support  from  senior  and  newly-­elected  representatives,  to  date  however,  no  committee  hearings  have  been  conducted.    No  parallel  bill  has  been  filed  at  the  senate.    The  prevailing  impression  is  that  the  Liberal  Party  is  supportive  of  a  new  mining  law.    The  mining  bills  have  not  been  prioritized,  and  there  is  no  indication  that  it  will  be  certified  as  urgent  by  President  Aquino.    No  clear  directives  to  push  for  the  mining  bills  from  the  Office  of  the  President  is  seem  to  be  forthcoming,  nor  were  there  indications  that  mining  issues  were  discussed  in  the  LEDAC,  except  during  the  finalization  stage  of  the  draft  PDP.  On  this  item,  the  PNoy  administration  gets  a  failing  mark  ATM  has  sent  at  least  two  formal  communications  to  the  Office  of  the  President,  urging  the  immediate  revocation  of  EO  270-­A  or  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mining  Industry.    ATM’s  position  is  that  this  is  a  legacy  of  the  GMA  administration,  and  as  a  misplaced  economic  policy,  has  no  rightful  place  in  the  “tuwid  na  daan”.    The  Office  of  the  President  has  twice  responded,  informing  ATM  that  the  matter  has  been  referred  to  the  DENR  Sec.  Ramon  Paje,  and  that  his  official  recommendation  is   being   awaited,   with   complete   staff   work.     To   the   best   of   our   knowledge,   no  recommendation  has  been  sent  to  the  OP  on  this  matter.    There  is  a  move  to  sign  a  new  EO  on  mining,  and  contains  the  controversial  proposal  of  Sec.  Paje  to  declare  23  mineral  reservations.    The  official  position  of  ATM  has  been  relayed,  opposing  this  provision  in  the  draft  EO,  and  counter-­proposing  a  “no-­go  zone”  policy  which  will  prohibit  mining  in  key  biodiversity  areas  and  fragile  island  ecosystems,  as  strongly  positioned  by  HARIBON,  one  of  the  ATM  convenors.    A  recent  report  from  the  House  Committee  on  National  Cultural  Communities  (IPs)  has  recommended  that  26       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  29. 29. ancestral  domains  be  included  as  “no-­go  zones”  for  mining.    For  this  item,  the  PNoy  administration  is  disappointing.  No  policy  pronouncement  for  a  moratorium  on  mining  has  been  declared  by  the  Aquino  administration.    House  Resolution  528  has  been  filed  at  Congress,  authored  by  Rep.  Teddy  Brawner  Baguilat  from  the  lone  district  of  Ifugao,  calling  for  such  a  mining  moratorium.    This  has  not  been  acted  upon  by  Congress.    PNoy  gets  a  failing  mark  on  this.    In   the   first   few   engagements   of   civil   society   with   Sec.   Paje,   one   of   his   initial  commitments  was  public  disclosure  of  mining  contracts.    After  several  attempts  and  months  in  waiting,  photocopies  of  the  contracts  of  the  23  priority  mining  projects  were  sent  to  the  ATM  office.    For  a  limited  time,  these  were  also  available  in  the  DENR  website.    Since  then,  the  list  of  mining  applications  and  approved  mining  contracts  are  downloadable  from  the  internet.    This  is  an  improvement.    However,  the  critical  portions  of  mining  documents  —  EIA  reports,  feasibility  studies,  ECCs  —  still  remain  inaccessible.    Maps  of  mining  tenements  are  likewise  almost  impossible  to  procure.    ATM  has  proposed  that  “midnight  mining  contracts”  be  subjected  to  review.    This  has  not  been  done.    The  DENR  has  done  an  internal  audit  of  almost  2,000  mining  contracts,  and  they  reported  that  they  have  canceled  almost  750  of  these  for  their  non-­performance.    However,  they  have  also  recommended  the  pursuit  of  more  than  125  mining  applications  and  live  contracts.    Commendation  for  the  effort   of   public   disclosure   is   in   order.     It   is,   however,   inadequate,   and   therefore,  disappointing. Alyansa Tigil Mina   27
  30. 30. With   regard   to   the   “legacy  problems”   of   mining   tragedies  and   disasters   in   the   past,   after  one  year  of  PNoy  administration,  very   little   has   been   actually  achieved.     Assessment   for   the  rehabilitation   of   the   Bagacay  Mine  has  been  completed.    But  that’s   about   it.     There   is   not  enough   capacities,   resources  and   resolve   to   address   the  abandoned   and   idle   mine   sites.     The   Marcopper   tragedy   in   Marinduque   has   not  been  addressed.    There  is  no  public  information  about  the  Mabatas  Tailings  Dam.  Finally,  the  assessment  of  the  7  abandoned  mines  has  not  been  completed.    For  this  item,  the  DENR  and  PNoy  get  a  failing  mark.  In  terms  of  engaging  the  government,  civil  society  is  relieved  to  witness  and  be  part  of  remarkable  accomplishments.    Significant  reforms  in  the  National  Commission  on   Indigenous   Peoples   (NCIP),   the   Commission   on   Human   Rights   (CHR)   and  the   National   Anti-­Poverty   Commission   (NAPC)   were   clearly   pursued.     These  bodies   have   significant   contributions   in   resolving   conflicts   in   mining-­affected   communities,  particularly  in  the  case  of  indigenous   peoples.     Numerous   resolutions   have   been   issued   including   cases   in   Nueva   Vizcaya   and   Palawan.     Assessments   and   evaluations,   including   financial   and  legal  audits  of  the  performance  and  outputs  of   these  agencies  are  well  underway,  possibly  pointing   to  even  greater  reforms.    Some  fruitful  engagement   with   the   Climate   Change   Commission   (CCC)   was   also   recorded.     Even   the   DSWD   have   extended   its   interest  to  engage  civil  society  to  support  initiatives   for  IPs  and  rural  poor  impacted  by  mining.  To  this   end,  this  item  can  be  described  as  a  successful  effort,   and  gets  a  high  passing  mark.   ATM  has  actively  engaged  the  formulation  process  of   the  Philippine  Development  Plan  (2011-­2016).    The   engagement   can   be   illustrated   as   a   running   battle,   with  the  civil  society  trying  its  best  to  keep  up  with   the  intent  of  the  mining  industry  and  the  DENR  to   sustain  the  priority  status  of  mining  as  an  economic   policy.    Overall,  however,  the  process  of  crafting  the   new  PDP  can  be  described  as  participatory,  open  and  28       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  31. 31. genuine.    Theoretically,  mining  has  been  downgraded,  with  its  role  characterized  as  needing  to  comply  with  the  conservation,  protection  and  rehabilitation  policies  of  the  government.    Meanwhile  the  Economic  Cluster  of  the  administration  continued  to  pitch  mining  as  a  critical  industry,  effectively  inserting  it  as  one  of  the  investment  priority   areas   of   the   Aquino   administration.     With   these   conflicting   aspects,   the  PNoy  administration  is  given  a  unsatisfactory  rating.  LRC-­KsK,  one  of  the  ATM  convenors,  has  eloquently  described  the  commendable  behavior  of  several  LGUs,  in  their  assertion  to  say  no  to  mining  in  their  territorial  jurisdiction.    Despite  the  continuous  policy  on  mining,  LGUs  have  gained  ground  with  several  provinces  issuing  executive  orders  and  passing  resolutions  not  to  allow  mining   and   effetively   withdrawing  their   consent.     The   trailblazing   Sagittarius Mines, Inc. (SMI) of the Philippines, along with Australian-based Xstrataeffort   of   South   Cotabato   with   its   Copper (a subsidiary of the Swiss-British giant Xstrata Plc) and Indophil Resources NL, also of Australia, is proposing a project that will impact the South Cotobato, Davao del Sur, Sarangani and Sultan Kudarat provinces.Provincial   Environment   Code   has   Mining in Tampakan will:inspired   other   LGUs,   including   Cause extensive physical disturbance of almost 10,000 hectares of forest landsZamboanga   del   Sur,   to   replicate   that serve as the watersheds of the four provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Davao del Sur and Sarangani;the  local  ordinance.    On  the  other   Leave 1.65 billion tons of waste rock and 1.1 billion tons of tailings in an area of high seismic activity and fault lines;hand,   while   there   will   be   few   to   Affect the water resources of communities, as it will impact the head waters of 7 river systems, affecting water supply reserved for residential and irrigationquestion  the  capability  and  integrity   purposes;of  Sec.  Jesse  Robredo  of  the  DILG,   This mining project will use up thousands of liters of water per second; Cut down 4,000 hectares of forests including old growth forests, which arethe   anti-­mining   movement   was   initial components of the protected areas system (NIPAS);shocked   when   he   issued   a   Memo   Displace more than 2,600 people belonging to the B’laan communities; the mine site will also affect the ancestral domains, covered by CADT 102, CADT 108, CADT 72 and CADC 74;Order   instructing   the   Provincial   It will also undermine the Provincial Environment Code of South Cotabato’s ban onGovernment   of   South   Cotabato   to   open pit mining signed last June 29,  a  provision  on  its  Provincial  Environment   Code   that   banned  open-­pit   mining   in   the   locality.     It  should   be   mentioned   however,  that  DILG  officials  have  in  general,  remained   open   to   dialogue   and  negotiations   on   a   case-­to-­case  basis.     Conscious   of   the   principle  of   decentralization   and   local  autonomy,  ATM  gives  LGUs  a  high  grade,   while   disappointed   with   the   *all data were derived from SMI’s own draft Environmental Impact Statement last April 2011misinformed  stance  of  the  DILG.  Indigenous  peoples  bear  the  brunt  of  the  negative  impacts  of  mining.    More  recent  maps  produced  by  ATM  members  reveal  that  more  ancestral  domains  are  threatened  by  mining,  as  compared  to  available  data  in  2005.    This  scenario  is  compounded  by   the   questionable   issuance   of   FPIC   (free,   prior   and   informed   consent).     It   is  interesting  to  note  that  remedial  measures  have  been  initiated.    A  review  of  the  2006   Alyansa Tigil Mina   29
  32. 32. FPIC   guidelines   was   recently   concluded,   and   civil   society   is   awaiting   with   much  anticipation   the   results   of   these   exercise,   looking   forward   to   substantial   reforms.    Credits    go  to  the  newly-­installed  NCIP  commissioners  and  the  House  Committee  on  NCC  (IPs).    While  cases  involving  conflicts  in  ancestral  domains  versus  mining  remain  considerable,  there  are  enough  openings  to  be  hopeful.    But  these  are  only  enough  for  a  passing  mark.Actions  of  the  PNoy  administration  to  site-­specific  cases  reveal  ambivalence  regarding  the   mining   issue.     On   one   hand,   favorable   action   has   been   observed   with   the  decision  to  cancel  mining  contracts  in  Palawan,  and  the  public  recognition  that  the  stand  of  the  LGUs  not  to  accept  mining  is  legitimate,  such  as  the  cases  in  Romblon  and  Oriental  Mindoro.    The  situation  in  Tampakan,  South  Cotabato,  seems  to  be  a   problematic   for   the   government,   though,   as   the   government   has   sent   signals   to  foreign  investors  that  the  national  government  is  ready  to  intervene,  when  the  right  time  comes.    Using  the  escalating  tensions  being  reported  by  the  Sites  of  Struggles  as  a  barometer,  it  is  safe  to  say  that  while  some  forms  of  victories  in  some  sites  have  been  gained,  this  is  not  a  general  rule.    For  this  matter,  a  rating  of  disappointment  is  justified.Summary Rating of PNoy Administration on the Mining Issue 1.   Scraping  of  the  Mining  Act  of  1995  (RA  7942)  and   enactment  of  a  new  mining  law30       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  33. 33. PRESS  RELEASE September  19,  2011Greens ask: If DENR doesn’t, who will?A   synergy-­promoting   coalition   of   nearly   30   organizations   and   networks   working  on   various   environmental   concerns   has   expressed   extreme   disappointment   in  the   DENR.     The   Green   Convergence   for   Safe   Food,   Healthy   Environment   and  Sustainable   Economy   (GC)   said   that   while   DENR   is   supposed   to   protect   the  environment,  recent  news  reports  are  proving  the  opposite.The  group  disclosed  that  among  the  series  of  news  that  had  drawn  their  ire  was  the  most   recent   pronouncement   of   DENR   Sec.   Ramon   Paje   about   the   possibility   of  lifting  the  ban  on  mining  applications  and  reconsidering  even  those  that  had  been  rejected.  GC  said  Paje  has  clearly  sided  with  the  mining  industry  versus  the  will  of  the   Filipino   people   who   have   persistently   asked   that   this   destructive   business   be  limited  if  not  banned  completely.    Paje   has   also   reportedly   recommended   that   areas   where   mining   companies   are  operating   be   turned   into   mineral   reserves   so   that   the   government   can   collect   a  higher  percentage  of  the  companies’  income.  GC  pointed  out,  however,  that  while  it  may  seem  like  a  good  idea,  a  closer  look  would  reveal  that  its  downside  far  outweighs  its  potential  income  benefit.    Fr.  Archie  Casey,  GC  Internal  Vice-­President,  explained,  “If  that  is  done,  the  mining  company  would  have  rights  over  everything  in  the  area  and  not  be  subject  to  the  laws  that  are  precisely  meant  to  protect  our  resources  -­-­  like  the  NIPAS  on  protected  areas,  IPRA  on  the  rights  of  indigenous  peoples,  and  EO  23  on  the  logging  moratorium  in  natural  and  residual  forests.    The  companies  would  also  have  the  right  to  all  the  water  in  their  reserve,  to  the  detriment  of  communities  living  there.”    The  priest,  who  represents  the  church-­based  JPICC-­AMRSP  in  the  Green  Convergence,  concluded,  “All  of  these  are  unacceptable.”   Alyansa Tigil Mina   31
  34. 34. Citing   a   separate   news   report   that   MMDA   Chair   Francis   Tolentino   planned   to  revisit  incineration  as  a  garbage  solution  and  that  Paje  had  been  consulted  about  it,  Marie  Marciano,  GC  External  Vice-­President  and  an  active  zero-­waste  advocate  of  the  EcoWaste  Coalition,  remarked,  “Sec.  Paje  should  have  been  the  first  to  oppose  this  move,  because  incineration  is  banned  under  the  Clean  Air  Act  to  protect  our  people  and  environment  from  the  dioxins,  furans,  heavy  metals  and  other  toxic  by-­products  of  incineration.”  According   to   Marciano,   although   Chairman   Tolentino   gave   assurances   that   new  technologies  can  keep  emissions  at  a  minimal  level,  there  is  no  safe  level  of  exposure  to   some   of   these   highly   toxic   substances,   particularly   dioxin,   and   there   is   yet   no  ‘high   tech’   incinerator   that   can   completely   prevent   harmful   emissions.     “Besides,  waste  can  be  converted  to  badly  needed  resources,  so  burning  waste  is  tantamount  to  burning  money!”  she  emphasized.The   group   also   lamented   an   earlier   report   that   Paje   had   recommended   the  exploitation  of  the  West  Philippine  Sea  for  its  oil.  “Does  he  not  take  global  warming  seriously?”  asked  GC  Secretary  Noemi  Tirona  of  the  Consumer  Rights  for  Safe  Food  (CRSF).  “He   should   be   the   first   to   advise   the   President   to   shift   away   from   the   fossil   fuel  economy,  since  studies  have  clearly  shown  that  the Philippines  is  blessed  with  more  than   enough   renewable   energy   sources   to   power   our   development   far   into   the  future,”  she  said,  adding  further,  “Exporting  the  oil  for  economic  gain  is  not  worth  the  suffering  and  losses  that  will  be  caused  by  climate  change.”  Green  Convergence  believes  that  at  this  point  in  time,  when  the  environment  has  been  so  devastated,  DENR  should  do  all  in  its  authority  to  prioritize  the  environment.    “There   are   many   ways   by   which   we   can   advance   national   development   through  programs  that  would  sustainably  utilize  our  natural  patrimony,”  declared  Dr.  Nina  Galang,   GC   President,   who   also   revealed   that   their   coalition   had   been   pointing  this   out,   dialoguing   with   Sec.   Paje   precisely   to   enjoin   him   to   show   bias   for   the  environment.    “This  is  his  role  in  the  Cabinet;  raising  money  is  not,”  she  stressed,  “and  if  DENR  does  not  speak  to  the  President  for  the  environment’s  protection,  who  will?  “     Reference: DR.  NINA  P.  GALANG 9296671   09178538841    32       2011  Position  Paper  on  the  Revitalization  of  the  Philippine  Mineral  Industry  Policy
  35. 35. Alyansa Tigil MinaAlyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) is an advocacy group and a people’s movementthat upholds the rights of the present and future Filipinos against thepersisting injustices related to large-scale mining.The term “tigil-mina”going against (to prohibit or ban) all kinds of mining. What ATM isreferring to, is stopping the policy regime on large-scale mining beingadopted by the Arroyo administration and the Department of Environmentand Natural Resources (DENR), which irrationally exploits mineralresources – undermining the ‘real value of land’ (where minerals are found)to Filipinos and promoting purely foreign-controlled and export-orientedmining industry,problems, poverty situation, environmental and other socio-politicalconcerns in our country.ATM, formed in 2004, is a coalition of organizations and individuals frommining-affected communities, NGOs, POs, church-based organizationsand academic institutions, that decided to disengage from the series ofconsultations convened by the DENR regarding the revitalization of themining industry through the aggressive promotion of large-scale mining inthe country.Much like the Bantay Mina coalition in the 1990s and the Peoples’ Callpresented at the Dapitan Initiative in 2002, ATM serves as a watchdog thatcorporations/institutions, multinational mining corporations and other keyplayers to expose their wrongdoings and failures of the laws and policies,their implementation and the practices involved in the mining industry.
  36. 36. Alyansa Tigil Mina Alyansa Tigil Mina National Secretariat # 973 Aurora Blvd. corner Dapdap St., Anonas, Cubao, Quezon City 1109 Philippines Tel.: +63 (02) 434.46.42 loc 27 Fax: +63 (02) 434.46.96 Emails:       Website:   Facebook:   Twitter:   Alyansa  Tigil  Mina   atm_philippines