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Philippines to prepare geo-hazard map of gold mines

Koronadal City, Philippines: South Cotabato’s environment office and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau-12, Philippines, joined hands for geo-hazard mapping in high-risk areas in gold-rich T’boli town, according to Philippine media reports. Engr. Siegfred Flaviano, acting provincial environment management officer, informed media that they aim to ensure safety in small-scale mining sites at the mountains of T’boli. There are at least 300 mining tunnels in Barangay Desawu, T’boli, which is now being targeted for the geo-hazard mapping. Flaviano said that the mapping will also help curb illegal mining operations in the area and protect the environment from further degradation.
In 2011, South Cotabato earned PHP 9.7 million (PHP: Philippine Peso) from mining fees – an increase of about PHP 3.1 million. According to Flaviano, it could be possible because of more stringent implementation of policies pertaining to mining and quarry operations. Activities  include  closure of  tunnels that  have failed to secure permits,  establishment of  checkpoints along  exits  from the  mining sites, installation of  closed-circuit television  cameras  to monitor  transportation of  mineral  ore, organization of a multipartite monitoring team especially  in areas considered  as  hotspots in  illegal  mining  operations, and  granting  barangay and  municipal  LGUs  authority to conduct  raids  and apprehend  illegal  miners. PEMO has  also proposed  a  new policy  subject to  the approval by the Provincial  Mining  Regulatory  Board  for the collection of  a development  fund   from the mining operators. Source: PIA