Largely out of sight in the rugged mountains of Nueva Vizcaya, Australian-Canadian company OceanaGold has been making millions mining gold and copper, while local people and the environment suffer.
The company has repeatedly violated President Duterte’s calls for responsible mining. OceanaGold has not adhered to its commitments under its mining permit and various Philippine laws and regulations. It is time to heed local calls to shut down this company’s operations.
This is the conclusion of a report just released by researchers from the United States, Canada, and the Philippines. The report builds on our years of studying OceanaGold’s Didipio Gold and Copper Mine operations in Nueva Vizcaya, begun as an open pit operation and now converted to an underground mine.
Our conclusions reinforce the findings of President Duterte’s first Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Gina Lopez, numerous petitions by local communities and elected officials around the mine, and strong positions taken by the provincial government. We have merged our findings with those of others in the just-released study [link] to provide ample documentation of unacceptable impacts of OceanaGold’s Didipio mine on water, forests, land, indigenous peoples, human rights, biodiversity, and workers’ rights.
Now is the time for President Rodrigo Duterte and DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu to act.