There will be no more permit approval for mining operations within Baguio City, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) stated during its weekly Talakayan sa Environment Code.
During the event, MGB regional director Faye Apil explained that applicants are in the processing stage for the operation of mining sites at Kias, Camp 7, and Atok Trail.
All these areas in the city are now classified as mineral reservation areas through the Proclamation No. 414 issued by former president Carlos P. Garcia in 1957 which declares some 380.9 hectares within the city’s town site reservation covering portions of Barangays Loakan Apugan, Kias, and Atok Trail as mineral reservations and excluded the same from the city’s town site reservation.
On the other hand, Proclamation No. 572 which was also issued by Garcia in 1959 excluded some 159 hectares from the city’s town site reservation covering Barangays Mines View and Lucban from the city’s town site reservation and declaring it is mineral reservation in the city.
“These areas as of now are classified as mineral reservation areas. When we looked at the terrain and geological situation in the area, this was not favorable for residential areas which was probably the reason why it was declared as a mineral reservation site,” Apil said in a report by SunStar.com.
However, these identified mineral reserves have houses constructed within.
Meanwhile, Baguio Regreening Movement (BRM) chairman Erdolfo Balajadia reminded the agency of the provision prohibiting mining activities within the boundaries of Baguio City.
“Unfortunately we fought hard for this provision but the City Council during my time chose to remove that particular provision which is why we are asking the council to restore this provision,” Balajadia said.
BRM’s resolution that aims to restore said provisions is still awaiting whether it will be approved or not.
Apil countered Balajadia saying that the city environment code stated that no mining within the City of Baguio can exist except for those areas identified as mineral reservation which is for the City Council to decide.