DENR suspends three mining agreements in Masungi Georeserve
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on Wednesday ordered the suspension of Mineral Production Sharing Agreements (MPSAs) granted to three mining companies in Masungi Georeserve in Baras town, Rizal province.
In separate orders, DENR acting Secretary Jim Sampula suspended the MPSAs given to Rapid City Realty and Development Corp., Quimson Limestone, Inc., and Quarry Rock Group, Inc., which were all non-operational since 2004.
“I am suspending the operation of those three MPSAs, and remove the companies’ authority to operate in order to remove the public’s speculation and ease their worries,” Sampulna said in a statement.
“I am also calling all those support groups and environmentalists to be active in helping us, by reporting such illegal activities for us to take action immediately,” he added.
DENR-Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) Director Wilfredo Moncano in the same statement then assured that the MGB-Calabarzon has already been ordered to conduct investigations on other alleged illegal quarrying activities within the Upper Marikina River Basin Protected Landscape (UMRBPL).
“We will be ordering an investigation if there are any ongoing illegal quarrying operations, despite the suspensions,” Moncano said.
The UMRBPL was declared a protected area in 2018 under the Expanded National Integrated Protected Area Systems Act or ENIPAS Act.
Meanwhile, it was in 2017 when former DENR Secretary Gina Lopez and Masungi Georeserve Foundation Inc. (MGFI) signed a memorandum of agreement covering the 2,798 hectares of land situated inside the UMRBPL for conservation efforts.