One of the illegal small-scale mining plants in Agusan Del Sur (Photo courtesy of DENR 13)
AGUSAN DEL SUR, Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Mines and Geosciences Bureau has ordered the closure of 14 illegal small-scale mining plants in Agusan Del Sur this month.
It was in line with the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte and with the observance of Environment Month.
Among the violations of the said mining plants were lack of permit and inaccurate excavation that could lead to landslides.
According to Gerzon Gallego, spokesperson of DENR Caraga, the provincial government of Agusan Del Sur already issued a cease-and-desist order to 84 small-scale mining operations in the province.
However, only 14 were ordered closed so far.
“Sinabihan sila na, ‘Kung di niyo ititigil yan isasara na namin yan’. Talagang may gagawing action ang DENR dahil may order,” Gallego said.
(They’ve been warned, “If you do not stop, we will shut you down.” The DENR will definitely take action because there is an order.)
Meanwhile, the municipal governments are working on providing alternative livelihood source to miners and residents affected by the closure. – Raymund Octobre / Marje Pelayo
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