MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Filipino Youth Oppose Large Scale Commercial Mining!

Published by MAC on 2005-09-22
Source: YSDA-Pilipinas Inc

Filipino Youth Oppose Large Scale Commercial Mining!


September 22, 2005

An official statement of the YSDA-Pilipinas Inc, (Youth for Sustainable Development) to Greet delegates of the October 11-16 International Mining Conference in Manila

This coming October 11-14, the Philippines Chamber of Mines will host the meeting of the ASEAN Federation of Mining Association (AFMA) to promote mining investments here in the country. This will be greeted by massive protests by civil society organizations; lead by communities who will directly be affected by mining operations; particularly indigenous peoples (IP) and other rural poor communities.

Large scale commercial mining has remained problematic and not viable from a sustainable development point of view in a densely populated, largely poor, archipelagic country like the Philippines. Because of the dense population with very small land area; conflicts along various uses and various sectors are very intense.

It is interesting to note that being a mega diverse country , the environmental services of our intact natural resources providing clean air, clean water, biodiversity resources, food and livelihood for countless of our rural communities have not been fully taken into account when valuating the current land uses vis-à-vis that of using our lands for large scale commercial mining. In a lot of sense, we are blindly selling what already sustains the very survival of majority of our people who derives their livelihood from sustainably using our natural resources.

YSDA-Pilipinas Inc. (Youth for Sustainable Development Assembly), a network of 20 youth and youth-serving organizations all over the country joins many other civil society organizations in opposing large scale commercial mining.

Mining operations that last for at least 25 years is a clear inter-generational equity issue since leaders of today are already selling the endowment of future generations. In the case of mining it is even more crucial since the changes to ecosystems and communities in a mining operation are permanent and irreversible.

The question of today’s young people in the Philippines is not whether mining will earn enough for us today but whether in the long term, beyond the term of all government officials today; beyond the investments life of the mining companies shareholders; will there be enough endowment for a life with prosperity and dignity for the next generations to come.

The future of the Philippines is not for sale! Young people will take to the streets to bring this message to all those attending this international mining conference in October. We enjoin the children of the leaders of these mining companies to consciously search their soul on these decisions being made for their future by their parents.

We invite youth and student leaders in the National Capital Region (NCR) to come together and mobilize against this conference to express our opposition against large scale commercial mining and the mining act of 1995. A briefing and campaign planning session is set for this Saturday 1pm. Text 0928 3999626 to join.

For information, please contact:

Kristine “Batin” Ravanera
Mobile +63 921629666

Roy Cabonegro
Executive Director
Mobile +63 928 3999626
Tel +63 2 426-67-40

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