Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB)-7 Regional Director Loreto B. Alburo bared six priority or flagship programs this year following a directive from DENR Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje and MGB Acting Director Leo L. Jasareno.

The six programs are geohazard assessment and mapping for land and coastal areas, groundwater resources assessment, mining industry development program for responsible mining, national mineral reservation, mine rehabilitation, and communication plan for minerals development.

“Geohazards assessment and mapping is pursued to generate information on the susceptibility to various types of geologic and natural hazards,” Alburo added.

He disclosed that such information which is made available to authorities for physical framework, land use planning, land use classification and allocation, project development and disaster preparedness, management and mitigation.

To ensure availability of water, the assessment of groundwater resources is also a priority program of MGB.

Meanwhile, transformation of abandoned mines into environmentally safe areas is part of the activities of the rehabilitation of abandoned mines which include implementation of rehabilitation measures, reconnaissance survey and risk assessment, development of final mine, monitoring, care and maintenance.

The national mineral reservation program intends to declare mineral-rich areas as mineral reservation to increase revenues from mineral resources.

Ensuring compliance of minerals industry to laws, rules and regulations, the MGB, on the other hand, conducts monitoring of work programs, safety, health, environment, and social development.

“We want to make sure that all operating mines and quarries or large scale mining companies which are within the jurisdiction of MGB inCentral Visayasare fully compliant to existing guidelines,” he added.

The MGB is a primary government agency under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources responsible for the conservation, management, development and proper use of the country’s mineral resources including those in reservations and lands of public domains.