ILOILO CITY, 10 Aug (PIA)—The Mines and Geosciences Bureau-6 said it is supporting the Iloilo Provincial Government in preserving the Iloilo Rivers against over-quarrying.
MGB Regional Director Leo Van Juguan said in a press release, that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the MGB are one with the provincial government in the resolve to strengthen the regulation of quarrying activities in the province.
Juguan said the strict monitoring and regulation of any mining including quarrying activities is in line with President Duterte’s pronouncement during his second SONA.
“Protecting our watersheds, rivers, and aquatic resources is one of the major concerns of the President,” Juguan said.
Recently, the province of Iloilo has spearheaded the creation of an inter-agency committee that would assess the identified critical areas affected by over-extraction of quarry resources.
This inter-agency task force is composed of the National Economic and Development Authority, National irrigation Administration, Department of Public Works and Highways, DENR-EMB and MGB.
“This task force will assist the Iloilo Province to assess the areas, results of which will be the basis of the LGU for possible actions,” Juguan said.
He added that actions shall consist of suspension or cancellation of existing permits of violators.
“Declaring a moratorium on the issuance of new permits can also be done as needed to protect our rivers,” Juguan further said.
Basing on the President’s statements on mining, Juguan said that the role of the local government units in monitoring mining operations within their territorial jurisdictions, “without fear or favour” is important.
“This is to drive home the point that government is serious in implementing the regulations, and that, with LGUs’ conscientious efforts, reckless and unwarranted destruction of the environment through mining activities can be prevented,” Juguan said. (JCM/ESS/PIA-Iloilo)