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DENR suspends 3 ECCs for violations

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The Department of Environment and Natural Resources yesterday ordered the temporary suspension of the Environmental Compliance Certificates of two mining firms and one land developer for various environmental violations.

DENR Secretary Gina Lopez said Sagittarius Mines Inc.’s Tampakan Copper-Gold Mine Project in South Cotabato, Semirara Mining and Power Corp.’s Molave Coal Project in Antique, and Century Communities Corp.’s land development project in Quezon City were each given show cause orders to allow them to explain within at least seven days why their ECCs should not cancelled.

The $5.9-billion Tampakan Copper-Gold Mine Project has not started its operation but the respondent as of date still failed to secure permits and clearances from other government agencies; has not yet resolved pending issues with the Departments of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform; and has not yet secured favorable endorsement from the local government of Sultan Kudarat.

Semirara Mining’s Molave Coal Project’s ECC, which has been issued in April 29, 2016, has been suspended due to massive clearing affecting the island ecosystem and mangroves, land reclamation, dumping of mine waste and siltation due to run off, degradation of water quality, and water and air pollution.

Land developer Century Communities Corp.’s proposed housing project within the La Mesa Watershed in Quezon City is located just 24 meters above the La Mesa Dam. (Ellalyn B. de Vera)