Aquino Urged to Stop Magnetite Mining, Conversion of Coastal Areas Into PPP Ventures

Environmental Destruction and Climate Change

Pamalakaya also named several other projects which they said contribute to the devastating effects of climate change. Among said projects were the offshore mining activities in Cebu-Bohol Strait and Palawan waters that would destroy the marine and ecological balance in the waters of Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, Masbate and Palawan provinces.

“ The government is set to award 30 more contracts for unbridled exploitation of marine waters for oil and gas explorations. These contracts should be junked and the projects permanently shelved,” Hicap said.


(Photo by Ina Alleco R. Silverio / bulatlat.com)

In Cebu-Bohol Strait, a total of 445,000 hectares of marine waters will be laid bare to oil hunters and gas contractors looking for oil and gas reserves. In Palawan, more than one million hectares of waters will be explored for oil and gas exploration. This is apart from the oil and gas exploration being conducted by Exxon Mobil off Sulu waters in Mindanao.

Hicap also cited the reclamation project involving more than 7,000 hectares of coastal areas in Cavite. He said another 5,000 hectares of coastal areas adjunct to the expressway project will be reclaimed for the construction and modernization of Sangley naval port, which entails eco-tourism projects and construction of gambling and entertainment centers.
Other leaders of Pamalakaya also sounded the alarm against projects in their areas:

1)The 54,000 hectare Cagayan Export Processing Zone project in Cagayan province. The project involves development of a major Freeport zone, magnetite mining and the creation of world class international and seaport in Northern Philippines. The prime mover behind the project is Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile.

2)The offshore magnetite mining in Camarines Sur, Lingayen Gulf and Cagayan provinces which will cover several coastal municipalities in each province. The offshore mining of magnetite materials will affect the livelihood of more than 20,000 fishing families in the Camarines Sur province alone, aside from its huge environmental cost.

3) The widespread conversion of coastal municipalities of Nasugbu, Lian, Calatagan, Calaca, Lemery and Tuy into eco-tourism areas, all in first district, province of Batangas in Southern Tagalog region. More than 20,000 hectares of fishing and farming areas are covered by this district wide eco-tourism project.

4)The eco-tourism project in Taal Lake, Batangas which seek to develop the lake into a major tourist destination in Southern Tagalog region under the Metro Taal Development Project. More than 30,000 residents, mostly lake fishermen will be affected by this public-private partnership project on eco-tourism.

“The national auction of coastal resources to multinationals and transnational corporations should be put to an end. If this national policy of denationalization, privatization and conversion would continue, this country will forever be battered by the extreme impact of El Nino and La Nino,” said Hicap. ()

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