DIPOLOG CITY – Almost 100 mining stakeholders composed of local government officials, local business chamber officers, community members and church leaders are gathered here today for a one-day Fundamentals of Minerals Development (FMD) seminar.
Said forum is the fourth of a series of conversations with mining stakeholders in Mindanao spearheaded by the Coalition for Responsible Mining in Mindanao (COREMin2) in partnership with the University of the Philippines Department of Mining, Metallurgy and Materials Engineering, the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau. The first FMD was held late last year in Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur. Davao City and Koronadal, South Cotabato hosted the FMD in January and February 2011, respectively.
Topics covered are meant to introduce the concept and applications of responsible mining in the Philippines. It also aims to dispel unfounded accusations about large scale mining that have been perpetrated by the wittingly misinformed anti mining groups. The FMD serves as a venue for the public to raise their concerns and/ or ask questions about mining and get the reliable answers straight from competent learned professionals.
Below is the list of topics and their respective resource persons:
Minerals and Industrial Development/ Minerals and Metals in our Daily Lives – Engr. Louie Sarmiento, Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association President
Understanding the Geological Wealth of the Philippines – Engr. James Jun Hernando, District Geologist, TVIRD
The Philippine Mining Act of 1995 – Engr. Larry Heradez, Chief, Mining Tenements Division, MGB Central Office
Mining and Metallurgy – Engr. Ramil Mundo, Site Manager, Sibutad Project of Philex Gold Philippines
Mining Benefits – Engr. Rodolfo Velasco, Chief, Mining Environment and Safety Division, MGB Central Office
Environmental Management and Protection – Virna Baguio, Sr. Science Research Specialist, MGB Region IX
Two representatives from mining communities in Sibutad (President of the Parish Pastoral Council) and Siocon (member of the Subanon Tribe) gave first hand testimonials of the impact of mining operations in their lives, debunking common impressions that large scale minerals development is dirty, destructive and dangerous. From what they have shared, they see the mining companies as genuine partners of their communities.
The next mining conversations (FMD) will be held in Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay next month. Interested? Leave a comment and your contact details.