House approves bill banning mining operations in Nueva Vizcaya | Inquirer News
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House approves bill banning mining operations in Nueva Vizcaya

/ 04:00 PM February 17, 2014

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MANILA, Philippines–Nueva Vizcaya may soon be declared a mining-free zone.

This developed after the House of Representatives on Monday approved on third and final reading House Bill 3667 authored by Nueva Vizcaya representative Carlos Padilla which seeks to prohibit all mining operations in the province.

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Mining, Padilla claimed, contributed to environmental degradation that may affect the province’s rice supply.

Nueva Vizcaya, Padilla said, is self-sufficient in and an exporter of rice.

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The proposed measure also sought to protect indigenous peoples from dislocation due to mining, Padilla said.

The bill also sought to protect the neighboring provinces’ hydropower and irrigation system especially as Nueva Vizcaya is a major watershed, he added.

Padilla cited the Magat dam and the Pantabangan dam which get its water from Nueva Vizcaya.

Errant officers in a corporation, firm, partnership or association face six to 12 years imprisonment and a P100,000 to P500,000 penalty, according to Padilla’s statement on Monday.

Meanwhile, officers of foreign corporations violating the bill may be deported without court proceedings after the sentence is served and fines paid.

The bill defines mining as “the extraction of valuable materials or other geological materials, excluding gravel and sand marble.”

The proposed measure includes large-scale  and small-scale mining activities.

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TAGS: Carlos Padilla, mining-free zone, News, Nueva Vizcaya, Regions
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