Philippines minister says wants to ban new mines, suspends permit for nickel producer
Author: Enrico dela Cruz
The Philippines' environment minister said she wanted to ban new mines and would suspend the environmental permit of a nickel mine that is sandwiched between two protected areas.
"I want to put a moratorium on any new mine," Regina Lopez told a media briefing on Friday.
"I don't want to fight the mining companies, I can work with them as long as they don't silt the river, destroy the rice fields."
Lopez also suspended a nickel mine in southern Davao Oriental province run by private-owned Austral-Asia Link Mining Corp.
Lopez told Reuters on Monday that the environmental permit would be canceled because it sits between Mount Hamiguitan, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Pujada Bay, a marine protected area.
(Writing by Manolo Serapio Jr.; Editing by Joseph Radford)