[Press Release] Tampakan mining project deserves no ECC – Envi Group – ATM

TAMPAKAN MINING PROJECT DESERVES NO ECC – Envi Group

Detailing atrocities it may bring to people

 No Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) is valid for the Tampakan Copper Gold Mine Project of the Sagittarius Mines Inc. (SMI); this is the call of Alyansa Tigil Mina and other environmental group as they anticipate the release of DENR’s action on the ECC application of SMI.

ATM sent a letter to Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) Director Jose Miguel Cuna last Jan. 11, requesting DENR to release its final decision over SMI’s request for ECC as recommended by the Environment Impact Assessment Review Committee (EIARC).

ECC is a document that will be issued by DENR secretary or the Regional Executive Director after it was able to validate that an undertaking will not cause significant negative environmental impact and that the proponent has complied with all the requirements of the Environment Impact Statement. ATM had doubts that the Tampakan Project had responded rightfully in these considerations.

“We do not want to attract more casualties and death when natural disaster hit Mindanao or the whole country. Tampakan Project just like the other mining venture in the country poses high threats for the environment and the community,” said Jaybee Garganera, National Coordinator of Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM).

As the Tampakan mining project progresses steps for its full implementation, various organizations had been repelling its implementation. In September 2011, Social Action Center of the Diocese of Marbel had drawn more than 5,000 people in a public forum challenging the Environmental Impact Assessment of SMI. The group was also able to collect 100,000 signatures from people opposing the planned large-scale mining.

Also in September 2011, group of farmers staged a shame campaign against SMI deterring the probable billion tons of toxic waste rocks and tailings that may pollute their water and damage agricultural production in an any single failure at any time should the project be pursued.

“We cannot defy nature. Experts already claimed that the Tampakan Mining Project covering provinces in South Cotabato, Sarangani, Sultan Kudarat and Davao Del Sur is sitting on a stratovolcano complex that can be filled with explosives and toxic gas capable of killing many people,” explained Anabelle Plantilla, Chief Operating Officer of Haribon Foundation recalling the report of the London Working Group on Mining in the Philippines (WGMP-UK).

Garganera urges DENR to be transparent in this undertaking. “We need to know if the department is advancing the interests of the affected communities more than anything else. We have already expressed our deep grief when the mining exploration was approved, we should not have the same fate for ECC. What we want is a total rejection of the project”

Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) is an alliance of mining-affected communities and their support groups of NGOs/POs and other civil society organizations who are opposing the aggressive promotion of large-scale mining in the Philippines.

(30)

For more information:

Ms. Anabelle Plantilla, COO of Haribon Foundation, <coo@haribon.org.ph>
Jaybee Garganera, ATM National Coordinator, (0927) 761.76.02 <nc@alyansatigilmina.net>
Farah Sevilla, ATM Policy&Advocacy Officer, (0915) 331.33.61 <policy@alyansatigilmina.net>

 Press Release
January 12, 2012

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