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6 Feb 2017

Enrico Dela Cruz & Manolo Serapio, Jr., Reuters

Philippines to shut half of mines, mostly nickel, in environmental clampdown

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2 Feb 2017

The Philippines ordered the closure…of 23 mines, mainly nickel producers that account for about half of output in the world's top nickel ore supplier, in a government campaign to fight environmental degradation by the industry.

Manila also suspended operations at another five mines, including the country's top gold mine operated by Australia's Oceanagold Corp, as Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Regina Lopez vowed to put the public's welfare above mining revenues.

"My issue here is not about mining, my issue here is social justice," Lopez, a staunch environmentalist, said at a briefing that showed footage of damage from mining to an audience including priests and residents of mining communities…

[President] Duterte has backed Lopez's mining audit, warning last year that the Philippines could survive without a mining industry. He supported Lopez's latest action...

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Philippines: Department of Environment & Natural Resources closes 23 mines & suspends 5; civil society groups claim victory for affected communities while industry mulls legal action

Philippine mining crackdown