DENR Sec. Gina Lopez Bans Anew All Prospective Open-Pit Mines in the Philippines


Secretary Gina Lopez of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) fired another shot at the mining industry as she ordered anew to ban all prospective open-pit mines in the Philippines.

Panian Mine, Semirara Island, Philippines
During a press briefing DENR Sec. Lopez announced that she is banning the open-pit method of mining for copper, gold, silver and complex ores all over the country.

Sec. Gina Lopez was quoted as saying "As a matter of policy, which is my prerogativve as DENR secretary, we're banning open-pit mining, prospective, for the following reasons: that pit is gonna be there forever and a day, eternally," Lopez said.

Sec. Lopez cited several reasons for the ban including its financial and environmental liability; deprivation of economic use of the area; continuing adverse impact on the environment; and its high risk to host communities.


Under the Philippine Mining Act, an open-pit mining is allowed but Sec. Lope claimed that it was within her prerogative to issue and order to ban the practice.

She noted that open-pit mining is too much of a risk and explained also that she have the mandate to evaluate and have the duty to put a stop to it.

Sec. Lopez was quoted as saying "Each open pit is a financial liability for government for life. It kills the economic potential of the place,” she added.


Lopez emphasized that open pits have ended up as perpetual liabilities, causing adverse impacts to the environment, particularly due to the generation of acidic and heavy metal-laden water, erosion of mine waste dumps and vulnerability of tailings dams to geological hazards.

She added that records show that most of the mining disasters in the country were due to tailings spills associated with open-pit mining.

Source: Philippine Information Agency

DENR Sec. Gina Lopez Bans Anew All Prospective Open-Pit Mines in the Philippines DENR Sec. Gina Lopez Bans Anew All Prospective Open-Pit Mines in the Philippines Reviewed by Phil Newsome on 4/30/2017 Rating: 5

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