Three Mining companies in Central Visayas were recognized for their exemplary acts of fostering care for the environment and communities in the course of their operations.
The Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association (PMSEA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Mines and Geosciences Bureau (DENR – MGB) bestowed the highest honors to the mining companies that embodied unpretentious responsibility over their impact communities and the environment they are working in, in a formal gathering during the Presidential Mineral Industry Environmental Awards (PMEIA) Night on November 22 at CAP – John Hay Trade and Cultural Center in Baguio City.
Carmen Copper Corp. in Toledo City, Cebu was conferred with the 2019 Presidential Mineral Industry Environmental Award Platinum Achievement for Surface Mining.
The Philippine Mining Service Corp (PMSC) – Alcoy Plant in Alcoy, Cebu was accorded the 2019 Best Mining Forest Award and the 2019 Safest Mineral Processing – Crushing Plant Category.
The PMSEA and DENR-MGB also gave recognition to Carmen Copper Corp. as the Most Improved Safety Performance Award, while the Philippine Mining Service Corp. – Bohol Plant in Garcia Hernandez, Bohol placed 2nd in the Safest Mineral Processing – Crushing Plant Category.
PMEIA was established by then President Fidel V. Ramos through Executive Order No. 399 on February 3, 1997 to recognize the exemplary efforts of the mining industry in the country in achieving environmentally and socially responsible mining operations. The Presidential Mineral Industry Environment Award is conferred annually to deserving groups or companies engaged in mining activities in the country under the categories of Mineral Exploration, Quarry Operation, Surface Mining Operation, Surface Mining Operation, Underground Mining Operation, Mineral Processing, and Research and Development.
The search for the Best Mining Forest Program stemmed from the “Adopt-a-Tree, Adopt-a-Mining Forest Movement” under the DENR Administrative Order No. 22, series of 1989 calling for the establishment of mining forests within the specified area of the mining industries. The awarding of winners for the Best Mining Forest Contest is done during the Annual Mine Safety and Environment Conference (ANMSEC).
“It is with great pride as a regulatory agency that these mineral industries in Central Visayas has been recognized in their commitment to put premium in the communities where they belong by aiding in the upliftment of the economic and social conditions of the people around them, as well as taking full responsibility in managing the impacts of their operation to the environment. This only shows that our campaign for Responsible Mining is effective and is already happening,” said MGB – 7 Regional Director Loreto B. Alburo.
The winners of the PMEI Award for the Surface Mining, Quarry, Mineral Processing categories were evaluated in the following criteria:
- Has an Environmental Compliance Certificate; has no unresolved Notice of Violation, or Suspension Order, and was not issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources a Cease and Desist Order during the coverage period (2nd semester of the previous year and 1st semester of the current year;
- Has an approved Environmental Protection and Enhancement Program (EPEP), Final Rehabilitation and Decommissioning Plan and Annual EPEP for the coverage period;
- Has lodged the Contingent Liability and Rehabilitation Fund (CLRF) for the coverage period;
- Has an approved Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) and Annual SDMP for the coverage period;
- Has an approved Annual Safety and Health Program (ASHP) for the coverage period;
- Has no fatal industrial or work-related accident for the coverage period and until the bestowal of the award;
- Has been initially evaluated and endorsed by the MGB Regional Office concernd and met the deadline for submission of documents required by the PMIEA – Selection Committee.
“We are honored and humbled by these achievements. Being recognized by the industry regulators and peers is a testament to how Carmen Copper Corporation performs to go beyond mere compliance of the established mining law, policies and regulations. We will certainly continue our journey of creating value for the communities in Toledo City. We shall accomplish this through responsible stewardship,” said Roy O. Deveraturda, Carmen Copper Corporation’s President and CEO.
For PMSC – Alcoy, it has been their primary goal to clinch the Best Mining Forest Award after having garnered second best in the past years.
“We really aimed for this. And we thank the management and the rest of the workers of PMSC – Alcoy for supporting this reforestation program not only for compliance but to help minimize the impacts of global warming to the community, prevent landslide, protect aquifer, among other benefits of a reforested land,” said Winston S. Bolo, Resident Manager of PMSC – Alcoy as relayed by their Assistant Environment Section Manager Eric C. Lim, in a radio program, ‘Kalambuan sa Mina’ over DYLA yesterday.
PMSC – Alcoy has an annual goal to grow 30,000 endemic trees in a 65-hectare timberland property in Alcoy through co-management program with People’s Organization and the local government unit. They also managed a healthy mangrove plantation and maintained a crystal-clear seafront in their pier area.
The effective safety practices and initiatives in the work place involving their employees and contractors led them to obtain the 2019 Safest Mineral Processing Award in Crushing Plant Category – side by side with their sister company, PMSC – Bohol that ranked second in the same contest.
The PMEIA Awarding ceremony culminated the week-long activities of ANMSEC organized by PMSEA in Baguio City that ran from November 19-22, 2019 in celebration of the Mine Safety and Accident Prevention Month.
November was declared as the Mine Safety and Accident Prevention Month by virtue of the Presidential Proclamation No. 115-A.
PMSEA is a volunteer organization of professionals composed of a wide variety of disciplines related to the mineral industry. It’s mission is to promote the advancement of the Philippine Minerals Industry in the fields of occupational safety and health, environmental protection, and social development consciousness among the industries, government organizations and other involved- agencies. Every year since 1953, they recognize mineral industries who have promoted the doctrine of safety for workers and communities, and environmental protection.
This year’s programs of the 66th Annual National Mine Safety and Environment Conference are based on the three core values of Culture, Care, and Change.
“Culture is a sum total of what distinguishes a person or a nation; Care is what one refers to as consideration for the rights of others; and Change is what we all want to do to change for the better,” said Dr. Walter W. Brown, president of the Philippine Mines Safety and Environment Association.
He urged the mineral industries as well as the regulatory agencies to mind their organization’s culture, to be able to care for their workers, to the communities and the environment they belong, and take action based on compassion.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy A. Cimatu in a message read by Undersecretary for Climate Change Service and Mining Concerns Annaliza Rebuelta – Teh emphasizes the need for the mining industry to strengthen its commitment to care for the environment by ensuring sustainable environmental conditions at every stage of the mining operation.
“It is precisely for the protection of the people and the environment that national laws have been crafted. But as they say, even the best laws are useless if they are not religiously observed and properly enforced. The mining industry should spare no effort in complying to these laws and ensure that the environment is never compromised,” said Teh.
Regional Director Alburo said that the awards given to Carmen Copper Corp., Philippine Mining Service Corp. – Alcoy and Philippine Mining Service Corp. – Bohol is another milestone for the men and women of the regional office who have dedicated their lives to ensuring the mining and environmental laws and related directives are implemented in their regular monitoring in all the companies within the region.
“We hope that the recognition and accolades of these mining companies inspire others to go beyond the bare minimum of the compliance of the laws, and overturn the people’s dissenting perception of the public about the mineral industry caused by the sins of the past – before The Philippine Mining Act of 1995 was passed into law,” Alburo said.
“May they spark change in the industry and help us convince that indeed Responsible Mining is a reality,” he added.
Summary of Awards of the Central Visayas Mineral Industry:
|2019 PRESIDENTIAL MINERAL INDUSTRY ENVIRONMENT AWARD (Surface Mining Category)
|Carmen Copper Corporation (as operator of Altas Consolidated Mining and Development Corp.)||Platinum|
|2019 Best Mining Forest (Mineral Processing Category)||Philippine Mining Service. Corp – Alcoy||Winner|
|2019 Safest Mines Award (Crushing Plant Category)||Philippine Mining Service. Corp – Alcoy||Winner|
|2019 Safest Mines Award (Crushing Plant Category)||Philippine Mining Service. Corp – Bohol||Runner-up|
|Most Improved Safety Performance Award||Carmen Copper Corporation (as operator of Altas Consolidated Mining and Development Corp.)||Winner|