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Showing posts from March, 2013

Oppositions Mount up Anew vs Catanduanes Coal Mining

LEGAZPI CITY, March 19 (PNA) -– The new government-approved coal mining plan for Catanduanes is facing stern opposition from various local sectors that consider the venture a big setback to the Bicol island province’s remaining forests and agriculture-based economy. Allowing coal mining in Catanduanes would be a double whammy for the province, claimed a report recently tendered to the provincial government by an environmental expert who studied the impact of coal mining in the province. The report boosted up the “no mining” stance mounted by the Katandungan Kontra Mina (KKM), a local Catholic church-backed pro-environment group that in 2009 was able to ward off an attempt by a coal mining firm to operate in the province. In March last year, the Department of Energy awarded mining rights to Altura Mining Philippines Inc. (AMPI), a local subsidiary of Australian-owned Altura Mining Limited (ASX: AJM), following its successful bid for the Coal Operating Contract under the Philippin…

Aussie Firm to Operate Coal Mining in Catanduanes

LEGAZPI CITY, March 14 (PNA) – An Australian company has announced that it will soon start its coal mining operations within the island province of Catanduanes in Bicol. In a statement reaching here over the week, Altura Mining Philippines Inc. (AMPI), a local subsidiary of Australian-owned Altura Mining Limited (ASX: AJM). said the exploration activities are in line with the approved work program and stakeholder consultation process. The Department of Energy (DOE) awarded the mining rights to AMPI in March 2012 following its successful bid for the first of three coal operating contracts under the Philippine Energy Contracting Round 4 (PECR4). The mining site initially covers 7,000 hectares identified as “Area 3 Catanduanes,” the same site covered by a contract earlier awarded by the DOE under the PECR of 2009 to Monte Oro Resources and Energy, Inc. which backed out amid strong opposition mounted by local environmentalists some three years ago. Altura said it is awaiting confirma…

Keeping our Forests Better than Mining Coal

To get a better picture of how our island province of Catanduanes will fare even under conditions of the so-called responsible mining espoused by giant companies like the newcomer Altura Mining Limited, let us take a look at the present operation of Rapu-Rapu Minerals, Inc. (RRMI) and Rapu-Rapu Polymetallic Project (RRPP). With its avowed commitment to responsible mining and processing towards sustainable development, both firms presented to the small Albay island’s people the following diagram: Readers should note that the mining and processing operation is spread out over at least 100 hectares of the mountain above existing residential areas. Imagine 100 hectares of forest in Caramoran, Bagamanoc and Panganiban cleared of trees for Altura’s coal-mining project. For all the promises of the project proponents and supporters both in the national and local governments, there is little to show that the mining project has actually benefited Rapu-Rapu residents and lifted their lives f…