STOP BLACK SAND/MAGNETITE MINING IN ILOCOS REGION AND CAGAYAN
- OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES & THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES
The Beach and the Sea Monster
Once upon a time there is this big Sea Monster that ate the sand dunes of the coastal area of Sta. Catalina, Ilocos Sur like a sandwich. For the Sea monster, the sandwich was so nutritious because of its HIGH MINERAL content! The black sand and its magnetite fillings made it so delicious, and made the sea monster to have big bites.
This was allowed because nobody drove away nor stopped the Sea Monster. The bites left 6-7 feet deep scar and around 5-7 big bites. The biggest bite is that bite that reach the tip of the main road going to the beach.
The people remained waiting for the coming again of the Sea Monster and its worst bite. .... And the people remained to be living in fear ever after. The end (Miriam Javier-University of Northern Philippines-Center for Environmental Education and Sustainable Development).
There are a total of 158 applications for mining of magnetite, onshore and offshore.
However, the fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) wants the DENR to deny the applications. The group is afraid that the massive extraction of the mineral will cause environmental imbalance in rivers and coastal areas that may further degrade the environment and cause the economic dislocation of small fisherfolks whose livelihood depend directly on fishing in the municipal waters.
Pamalakaya said there are 15 magnetite mining applications in the onshore and offshore areas of San Juan (two offshore), Bacnotan (two offshore), Balaoan (two offshore), Luna (one offshore), Bangar (one offshore, one onshore), Pugo (one onshore), Burgos (one onshore), Santol (one onshore) and Sudipen (one onshore) in La Union province.
The group also learned that there are 57 blacks and mining applications in Ilocos Sur province, with four in Tagudin, four in Sta.Cruz, five in Sta. Lucia, four in Candon City, four in Santiago, four in San Esteban, five in Sta. Maria, five in Narvacan, eight in Santa, five in Caoayan, four in Sta.Catalina and four in Vigan City.
Pamalakaya noted that 86 applications for magnetite mining in Ilocos Norte province are pending before the MGB which cover the towns of Badoc (six), Pinili (three) Paoay (three), Laoag (three), Currimao (four), Bacarra (three), Pasuquin (13), Burgos (four), Bangui (one), Pagudpud (two), Batac (one), Banna (five), Nueva Era (seven), Marcos (six), Solsona (three), Carasi (five), Dingras (five), Vintar (six), Adams (two), Piddig (three) and Dumalneg (one).
Pamalakaya said the Vancouver based Canadian firm Colossal Mining holds five individual exploration and mining permits which will cover 80 percent of offshore magnetite mining for iron in the North Western Luzon along Lingayen Gulf encompassing the provinces of La Union, Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte, including its offshore activity in Cagayan province.
The group said the exploration and mining permits given to Colossal Mining would allow it to explore at least 15,700 hectares of offshore areas in North Western Luzon.
We suggest to develop an eco-tourism project not the destructive mining activity.