Ilocos Sur prov’l board urged: Pass total ban law

>> Wednesday, April 26, 2017

By Sherwin De Vera

VIGAN CITY, Ilocos Sur --    The Ilocos Network for the Environment (DEFEND Ilocos) submitted a letter to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Ilocos Sur, urging the body to pass a pending resolution seeking total ban on mining in the province.
“We would like to express our utmost support to the proposed resolution to declare the Province of Ilocos Sur as mine-free zone and commend the Provincial Board for taking up the issue,” said the letter signed by The Right Reverend Vermillion Tagalog, the group’s chairperson.
Tagalog is the Bishop of the Philippine Independent Church for the Diocese of La Union, Ilocos Sur and Abra.
The letter noted that “people’s protest against mining operations in the province continue to spread and grow” citing the successful protest actions against magnetite mining in Metro Vigan and resolutions opposing mining activities passed by the Municipalities of Santa, Narvacan, Sta. Maria, San Esteban, Santiago, Quirino, Cervantes and San Emilio.
It also mentioned the local mining ban of Vigan City in its coastal areas and a resolution by the League of Municipalities of Ilocos Sur against the operation of Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company both passed in 2012.
“These series of actions against mining are sufficient proof that your constituents do not favor mining operation in their respective territories. We hope that you will stand by them as they assert their right for a balanced and healthy environment,” the letter said.
In an earlier statement, DEFEND Ilocos said the proposed legislation is timely and appropriate because it bolsters the effort of Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Regina Lopez to close destructive mines and protect watershed areas.

Sangguniang Bayan member Christopher Abraham Baterina, chairperson of the committee on environment and natural resources, is the author of the proposed resolution.


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