Author Archives: External Affairs

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25th Annual Mining Symposium and Exhibits: A testimony to Filipino mining engineers’ vital role in socioeconomic progress

I call on you, practicing mining professionals, to take an active role in ensuring that the mining industry will make a positive difference in the lives of people and development of communities.”

This was the appeal made by DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu in his message during the 25th Annual Mining Symposium and Exhibits on September 6-8, 2018 at the Waterfront Insular Hotel in Lanang, Davao City.

With the theme “Mineral Industry: Gateway to Environmental Enhancement, Poverty Reduction and Community Development,” the event served as a venue for Filipino mining engineers to discuss notable developments in the mining industry and present their significant contributions to the fields of environmental enhancement, poverty reduction and community service.  It was hosted by the Mindanao Association of Mining Engineers, a chapter of the Philippine Society of Mining Engineers (PSEM). A considerable number of mining companies took part in the event where best mining practices as well as various products and technologies were showcased.

Regional Director Roger A. De Dios and fourteen mining engineers from the Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII actively participated in the event.

The first day of the event kicked off with the opening of exhibits. Numerous booths of mining companies presented their achievements, equipment, products, and souvenirs. To strengthen the camaraderie and sportsmanship between fellow mining engineers, golf and basketball tournaments were simultaneously held on that day.

The symposium proper took place on the second day. It commenced with the reading of former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos, Jr.’s message by Panabo City Councilor Gregorio U. Dujali III who duly represented him. The symposium featured comprehensive presentations and in-depth discussions on the industry’s policies, Mindanao development, socioeconomic development, mining technologies, best mining practices, research papers and other mining issues.

On the last day of the event, the PSEM and the MAEM hour was held to address the direction of issues affecting the profession, status of corporate paper and legal compliances, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) matters, and the resolutions to uphold the mining industry and its stakeholders. The event concluded with the oath-taking ceremony of new mining engineers and MAEM members as well as the renewal of oath of old MAEM members.


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MGB RXIII takes part in Inception Workshop on the Integrated Approach in the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridors in the Philippines Project

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII took part in the Inception Workshop on the Integrated Approach in the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridors in the Philippines Project on August 23-24, 2018 at the Almont Inland Resort in Butuan City.

The workshop was hosted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).  It was participated by Technical Working Groups (TWGs), government agencies (Regions XI & XIII), non-government agencies and members of the academe within Key Biodiversity Area (KBA) clusters.

The purpose of the inception workshop was to level off with the stakeholders and to solicit valuable inputs and recommendations regarding the finalization of the project concept and design. The proponent will also conduct technical and scientific studies based on actual and realistic situation through baseline analysis or spatial analysis of the proposed KBA clusters.

On August 23, the Assistant Secretary of Biodiversity Management Bureau presented the Rationale of the Integrated Approach to the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridors in the Philippines.  It was then followed by the UNDP consultants’ presentation on Enhancing Biodiversity, Maintaining Ecosystem Flows, and Enhancing Carbon Stocks through Sustainable Land Management and the Restoration of Degraded Forestlands, and Integrated Approach in the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridors in the Philippines.

The presentation on Rationale of the Integrated Approach to the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridors in the Philippines discussed the following topics:

  • Brief Overview of Biodiversity;
  • Philippine Biodiversity;
  • Ecosystem Diversity particularly the Caimpugan Dome in Agusan del Sur;
  • Philippine Ecosystem and Biodiversity Values Ecosystem Services; and
  • Salient points of Philippine Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (PBSAP); Policies that can potentially affect Biodiversity Corridors: Republic Act No. 7942 (Philippine Mining Act of 1995), DENR Administrative Order No. 99-53 (Regulations Governing the Integrated Forest Management Program); and Caraga Regional Development Plan relevant to Project Preparation Grant (PPG) of Biodiversity Corridors.

The presentation on Enhancing Biodiversity, Maintaining Ecosystem Flows, and Enhancing Carbon Stocks through Sustainable Land Management and the Restoration of Degraded Forestlands elaborated on the following:

  • The relationship of the three organizations namely Global Environmental Facility (GEF), Food Agriculture Organization (FAO), and Environment Sustainable Biodiversity Organization;
  • Criteria for Project Site Selection;
  • Multiple environmental and social benefits mainstreamed into the Government’s large investments in reforestation and forest restoration; and
  • Possible Enhanced National Greening Program (ENGP) “models” established through the project.

The presentation on Integrated Approach in the Management of Major Biodiversity Corridor in the Philippines discussed the following:

  • Biodiversity Focus;
  • Corridors Project;
  • Habitat Preference;
  • Species Distribution Model; and
  • Eastern Mindanao Biodiversity Corridor.

During the UNDP consultants’ presentations, a thematic map of KBA clusters based on the 2010 baseline data spatial analysis that delineates areas in Regions XI and XIII which have potential for biodiversity was shown.  Most of the clusters in the aforementioned regions are within MPSA areas and other tenurial instruments. With this, the consultants presented the No Net Loss (NNL) approach for accessing and mitigating the impact of projects on High Conservation Values (HCVs) that include the MPSA areas. The NNL approach utilizes the mitigating hierarchy of avoidance, minimization, rehabilitation, and offsetting if there is a residual impact.

During the plenary discussion of the morning session, the following topics were talked through:

  • Construction of road networks must be considered;
  • Enhancement of Environment Impact Assessment (EIA);
  • Steering committee on handling tenurial instrument overlapping included;
  • Peace and order situation in the areas must be identified; and
  • Application of exploration activities KBA must be included.

In addition, the balance of Mineral Reservation vis-a-vis Biodiversity Conservation hang on to this discussion.

In the afternoon, the DENR and line agencies/bureaus group tackled the cluster programs, projects, and activities as shown below:

CLUSTER 2
Surigao del Norte, Agusan del Norte (Cabadbaran City and Butuan City), Surigao del Sur (Tandag City), and Agusan del Sur
CLUSTER 3
Surigao del Sur and Agusan del Sur (Bayugan City and Municipality of San Francisco)
CLUSTER 4
Surigao del Sur (Bislig City) and Agusan del Sur
CLUSTER 6
Hamiguitan (Davao Oriental)
  • Mining
  • Ancestral Domain (Manobo + Mamanwa) with CADT and CADC plus application of NGP
  • Critical Habitat (proposed)
  • Protected Area (proclaimed Cabadbaran Forest Watershed Reservation)
  • NPA infested areas
  • Dipterocarps
  • NGP with plantations
  • Coconut plantations
  • Reforestation of logging companies
  • Community Based Forest Management (CBFM) with plantation + NGP + CADT
  • Hyrdropower projects and water treatment facility
  • Irrigation dams – falcata plantation
  • Mineral Reservation
  • International Facility Management Association (IFMA)
  • Mineral Processing Plants
  • Mining
  • Agusan Wildlife Marsh
  • Watershed (Mt. Diwata)
  • International Facility Management Association (IFMA)
  • Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT – Manobo)
  • Small-scale Mining
  • Plantations (palm oil, rubber, falcata, etc.)
  • Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA)
  • National Greening Program (NGP)
  • Watershed
  • Irrigation dams
  • Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) reservation
  • Wood processing plant
  • Rattan gathering permittees
  • NPA infested area
  • Rice and corn production
  • Oil mill
  • Waterfalls
  • Build-up areas

 

  • Mining
  • Nesting site of Philippine Eagle
  • Protected Area (PA)
  • CADC, CADT (Manobo and Mandaya)
  • Banana plantation
  • PICOP plantation (exotic)
  • CBFM
  • NGP
  • Proposed economic zone
  • Critical habitat
  • Carving ecotourism
  • Falcata and mangium plantation
  • Coffee plantation
  • Primary crops (coconut and rice)
  • Alienable and Disposable (A & D) land
  • Build-up areas
  • Irrigation System (NIA)
  • Certificate of Land Ownership (CLOA) – Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARB)
  • Proposed Protected Area for mangrove
  • Bislig City primary beneficiary

 

  • Mining
  • Beach Resorts
  • Timber poaching within National Commission on Agriculture (NCA)
  • Invasive species
  • Tourism preservation
  • Plantation (falcata and coconut)
  • Philippine Eagle nesting site
  • Proposed critical habitats
  • CADT (Mandaya)
  • Word Heritage Park
  • Asean Heritage Park
  • Local conservation area (27,000 hectares expanded)
  • Ecotourism on foothill
  • Biodiversity-Friendly Enterprise (BDFE)

The other group exclusively focused on consultations and discussions with mining companies. The UNDP consultants delivered the same platform of presentations directly addressed to mining stakeholders. The meeting was participated by the following mining companies:

  • Austral-Asia Link Mining Corporation;
  • Marcventures Mining and Development Corporation;
  • Platinum Group Metals Corporation;
  • Philsaga Mining Corporation;
  • Mindanao Mineral Processing and Refining Corporation;
  • Taganito Mining Corporation;
  • CTP Construction and Mining Corporation (Dahican and Adlay Projects); and
  • Carrascal Nickel Corporation.

The highlights of the meeting with mining companies are the following:

  • Recommendation to use updated spatial information. However, PPG Team uses only official data as of 2010 (NAMRIA Map). There might be other root causes of biodiversity loss other than mining activities;
  • Engagement of all stakeholders in decision-making process that would also benefit the communities;
  • More scientific restoration activities with participation of various sectors;
  • Key maps to be overlaid in the tenement areas; and
  • Capacity building on biodiversity conservation not only for mining companies but for MGB and EMB as well.

On August 24, the National Economic and Development Authority Regional Office Nos. XI and XIII and Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary gave presentations.

NEDA Regional Office No. XIII presented Rationalizing Mining Activities in Caraga Region with the following discussions:

  • Land area and classification;
  • Topography and climate;
  • Natural Resources;
  • Demographic Profile;
  • Economy;
  • Labor and Employment;
  • Major Challenges in Development; and
  • Observations, findings, and recommendations.

The presentation of NEDA Regional Office No. XI was all about the Region’s Highlights with the following topics:

  • Background Information;
  • Regional Forest Cover by Province;
  • Potential Area for Development; and
  • Accomplishment Monitoring Form on Maintaining Ecological Integrity and Clean and Healthy Environment.

The Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary presented Harnessing Stakeholders Participation in the Management of Protected with the following discussions:

  • Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary Experience;
  • Asean Heritage Parks;
  • Key Features – Biodiversity Features; and
  • Noteworthy practices undertaken by the respective stakeholders of Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary (MHRWS).

In the afternoon, the Barista Workshop was conducted wherein the participants were grouped into four café bars such as the Institution Coordination Mechanisms Café Bar; the Treats, Risks, and Assumptions GEF-assisted Project Implementation Café Bar; the Local Level Initiatives of Government Environment Facility (GEF) Assisted Project Build-on Café Bar; and the Community-based Initiative Café Bar.  Various programs, projects and activities were explored and discussed during the said workshop. The workshop concluded with the brief presentations on respective matters discussed by each group.

The inception workshop culminated in a photo session.

 


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MGB RXIII attends Seminar on Property and Supply Management System

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII attended the Seminar on Property and Supply Management System on August 28-31, 2018 in Butuan City.

The seminar was conducted by the Commission on Audit Regional Office No. XIII.  Almost 80 participants from various agencies and academic institutions took part in the said activity. The participants included Property/Supply Officers, Property Custodians, Storekeepers and others involved in managing the agency’s office supplies and properties, Budget Officers, members of the Bids and Awards Committee and others involved in the procurement activities, processing of claims, disbursement, financial transactions including certifying and approving officers, members of the GAD Focal Point System and also the Accountants and other personnel of Accounting Unit who are involved in the keeping of accounts and preparation of  the financial statements.

Atty. Usmin P. Diamel, COA Regional Director, gave the opening remarks.  He comprehensively discussed the importance of the Supply/Property Officer and the challenges that come with the work as well.

Vibrant and competent speakers gave presentations on various topics during the four-day seminar.

On Day 1, Ms. Eda Christine T. Jamolod, COA State Auditor IV (R13), presented the Internal Control Over Property and Supply Management System. Legal bases were given such as Republic Act 3456, Republic Act 4177, Administrative Order 278 and Section 124 of Presidential Decree 1445.  Three basic types of control were discussed namely Preventive Control, Detective Control and Corrective Control.  Internal Control refers to an organization’s whole system or network of methods, procedures and plans which govern its activities to accomplish its goals and objectives.  Such system is generally known as the Internal Control System.  The standards, criteria and limitations; the basic internal control requirements for PSMS and the factors that may reduce the effectiveness of control were likewise reviewed.

On Day 2, Ms. Virgilita C. Galeon, COA State Auditor IV (R13) presented the Procurement and Other Modes of Acquisition. The governing principles, general policies, specific procedures to be followed, and the factors to be considered in procurement were included in her discussion.  The modes of procurement as well as the laws and regulations pursuant to Republic Act 9184 and its implementing rules and regulations were also discussed.  Ms. Galeon also talked about Other Modes of Acquiring Government Property including transfer, donation, confiscation, production and construction.  She also reviewed the laws and rules that shall guide public managers in the acquisition of property under these modes.

On Days 3 and 4, Ms. Sally T. Ladaga, COA State Auditor IV (R13) presented the Forecast, Ordering, Delivery and Payment, Custodianship, Issuance and Utilization and Disposal. Ms. Ladaga discussed the forecasting of needs and demands for inventory and supplies and the guidelines in ordering these items.  Three general phases in acquiring government property which are the delivery of the items, their inspection and acceptance and the payment of these items were discussed in detail.  Similarly, she talked about the rules and regulations to be followed and the documents required to support the acquisition and payment.

Ms. Ladaga expounded on custodianship which refers to storage/warehousing and inventory management/taking of the property and the reports to be prepared and submitted relative thereto.  Issuance and Utilization include the responsibilities and activities in the issuance of inventory and supplies and the forms, reports and records that need to be accomplished and maintained. Ms. Ladaga also elaborated on disposal which is the end of the life cycle of a government property. The modes of and reason for disposing were likewise discussed and the types of assets that are subject to disposal, how they are inspected and appraised including the formula for their appraisal as well as the process followed along with the documents required in disposing them.  The speaker clearly explained Section 1 of Executive Order No. 888 and Commission on Audit Circular No. 89-296 that the full and sole authority and responsibility for the divestment or disposal of properties and other assets by the National Agencies and Local Government Units including its subsidiaries shall be lodged with the heads of the departments, bureaus and offices or governing bodies or managing heads of the concerned entities.

The active involvement of the participants led to the overall success of the seminar.  The participants have gained new knowledge of the proper procedure for the different phases of procurement up to the disposal of the agency’s supplies and properties.


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MGB RXIII supports PH-EITI Roadshow

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII supported the PH-EITI Roadshow on August 7, 2018 at Hotel Tavern in Surigao City.

With the theme Moving Beyond Transparency: Integrating Extractives Disclosure and Dialogue in Local Development, this year’s event will highlight the Fourth PH-EITI Report and the innovations to mainstream transparency in the extractives as a result of the EITI process.  The event was organized by the Philippine Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (PH-EITI) in partnership with the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP), the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) and Bantay Kita (BK).  Local stakeholders including local government units, regional offices of national government agencies, extractive companies and associations, civil society organizations and members of the academe and the media participated in the event.

Hon. Arturo Carlos A. Egay, Jr., Vice Governor of Surigao del Norte, delivered the Opening Remarks.  “Today, we convene as one family of advocates for transparency.  In this Roadshow, we will stage and showcase our best practices with the aim of crafting a roadmap towards sustainable development, inclusive growth and holistic transformation in consonance with the EITI standards… I am very positive that we can sustain this, that we can do this here in the Province of Surigao del Norte.  Kaya nato ini.  The EITI Philippines is here to help us.  This is a very good endeavor and EITI is one of the priority legs of the OGP or the Open Government Partnership alongside Open Legislation, Freedom of Information, among others,” he imparted.

Lectures, presentations and updates were given during the event. The program included a panel discussion which was participated in by government, industry and CSO representatives.  During the morning session, the panelists comprised Hon. Arturo Carlos A. Egay, Jr., Vice Governor of Surigao del Norte; Engr. Roger A. De Dios, MGB Caraga Regional Director; Atty. Ronald Rex S. Recidoro, Executive Director of Chamber of Mines of the Philippines; and Mr. Buenaventura M. Maata, Jr., Executive Director of Phil. Grassroots Engagement in Rural Development Foundation, Inc.  Atty. Recidoro and Mr. Maata are members of the PH-EITI Multi-Stakeholder Group.  Ms. Maricor Anne D.G. Cauton from the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines acted as the moderator of the panel discussion. After the stimulating discussion, an open forum ensued.

In the afternoon, a workshop was conducted in which the participants were grouped into breakout sessions.  The Data Dive Workshop on SEED Tools were given to participants who have attended past PH-EITI gatherings while the new participants took part in EITI 101 for New Stakeholders.  Towards the end of the event, there was a presentation on Workshop Outputs which was followed by the PH-EITI Transparency Awards.


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MGB RXIII plays a part in Caraga Mining Forum

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII played a part in the Caraga Mining Forum on July 26, 2018 at Hotel Tavern, Surigao City.

The said forum centred on the theme Benefits from Mining Industry Leading to Inclusive Growth and Authentic Sustainability. It was held on the third day of the 22nd Caraga Business Conference with the theme Convergence towards Sustainable & Inclusive F.A.M.E.++. The forum was an intrinsic part of the event in view of the fact that the minerals industry is one of the major economic drivers of Caraga Region which is dubbed the mining capital of the Philippines.  It was organized by the Surigao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (SCCI) and the Community Relations, Education & Development Officers Organization (CREDO Caraga), Inc. Trade and industry leaders, mining stakeholders, business students and members of the academe including a good number of local government units, regional offices of national government agencies, business associations and the media participated in the event.

At the opening program, Mr. Ronald C. Asignacion, President of CREDO Caraga, Inc., delivered the Welcome Message. The Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 was then presented by Regional Director Mylah Faye Aurora B. Cariño of the National Economic and Development Authority Caraga Regional Office. The following plenaries comprised the forum which engaged the interest and keen involvement of the participants:

Promoting Farm Tourism in Caraga Region
Speaker: Hon. Melva P. Garcia, Provincial Board Member of Surigao del Norte
Reactor: Mr. Woodrow Escobal, Proprietor of JB Nature Farm and Resort

Community Empowerment and Ecological Integrity: Vision for Development
Speaker: Engr. Roger A. de Dios, Regional Director of Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII
Reactor: Mr. Leonel Rojo, President of Dinagat Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.
Open Forum Moderator: Mr. Manuel R. Kong, Board of Director of Surigao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.

Positive Impact of the Mining Industry in the Region
Speaker: Mr. Rogel Cabauatan, Assistant Vice President for Environment and Community Relations of Nickel Asia Corporation
Reactor: Hon. Rito I. Placencia, Barangay Kagawad of Brgy. Hayanggabon, Claver, Surigao del Norte

Career Opportunities in the Mining Industry
Speaker: Mr. Gerardo Ignacio B. Ongkingco, Vice President for Human Resource of Nickel Asia Corporation
Reactor: Mr. Inocencio Angeles, Jr., President of City of Bayugan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. and Vice President of Agusan del Sur College

Data Analysis of the Mining Industry in Caraga Region
Speaker: Ms. Graciela E. Mante, Economic Development Specialist/Data Analyst
Reactor: Mr. Jojo Thairon G. Tacumba, Resident Manager of Greenstone Resources Corporation
Open Forum Moderator: Mr. Manuel R. Kong, Board of Director of Surigao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.

The event culminated in the Presentation of Resolutions by Mr. Willie A. Gan, SCCI President, and the Closing Remarks imparted by Mr. Benito T. Lim, SCCI Vice President.

 


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MGB RXIII takes part in the National Information Convention 2018

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII took part in the National Information Convention 2018 with the theme, Spurring National Development and Empowering Communities through Information, which was held on February 19 to 21, 2018 at the SMX Convention Center of SM City Lanang in Davao City.

The Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) through the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), initiated and organized the three-day event which gathered over 1,000 participants, mostly national and local government information officers including representatives from national and local private media; digital media groups; non-government organizations and civil society organizations; academe and Information, Communication and Technology industries.

The Philippine Information Agency, mandated via Executive Order 100 series of 1986 to be the premier development communication arm of Government, recognizes the singular role of information in spurring development and strengthening participatory governance by engaging citizens to become more involved in the democratic process. The National Information Convention or NIC has been intrinsically conceptualized with the following primary aims:

  • To encourage communicators to model effective and responsible sharing of information and use their platforms to provide information that will improve their audience’s quality of life;
  • To strengthen partnership between private and public-sector communicators, with the goal of nurturing a well-informed and enlightened citizenry and
  • To organize a movement of communicators that will empower communities by inspiring civic engagement towards nation building.

In his Keynote Message, PCOO Secretary Martin Andanar laid emphasis on the essence of communication and the importance of nurturing an enlightened citizenry by setting the narrative for the discussions on government policies, programs and activities.  “Let us wage war against disinformation, misinformation and fake news.  Let us advocate for a well-informed citizenry,” Sec. Andanar enunciated.

Day one of the convention featured presentations on understanding government programs and policies; nurturing a safe and healthy media environment and raising the bar of governance. Day two centred around talks on the promotion of responsible communication and the development of a dynamic development communication strategy. Day three talks focused on engaging the citizenry in nation-building. In addition, brand new communicators’ network, digital applications, and government services were simultaneously launched.


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MGB RXIII attends the Philippine Development Plan and the Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 Regional Launch

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII attended the Philippine Development Plan and the Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 Regional Launch on August 1, 2017 at the LMX Convention Center in Bancasi, Butuan City.

With the theme “Ikaw, Ako, Kitang Tanan: Kalamboan, Atong Paningkamutan,” the Regional Launch was truly a symbolic gathering of people across all sectors.

Before the program proper, the Exhibits were formally opened by Usec. Adoracion M. Navarro as assisted by the Local Chief Executives and the Regional Directors.

Butuan City Mayor Ronnie Vicente C. Lagnada delivered the Welcome Address. NEDA Caraga Regional Director Mylah Faye Aurora B. Cariño delivered the Opening Message. She also introduced the keynote speaker.

The Keynote Address was delivered by Undersecretary Adoracion M. Navarro who represented NEDA Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia. Usec. Navarro also presented the salient features of the Philippine Development Plan and the Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 in a nutshell.

The PDP and the RDP are firmly anchored on AmBisyon Natin 2040, the 0-10 point Socioeconomic Agenda of the Duterte administration, which is geared towards realizing a Matatag, Maginhawa at Panatag na Buhay to assist in laying the foundations of inclusive growth, a high trust society and a globally competitive knowledge economy by the end of 2022.

According to the RDP, the goal of the Regional Development Council is for Caraga to become the Fishery, Agro-forestry, Mineral and Ecotourism (FAmE) Center of the country by 2022.  To become the FAmE Center of the country, the region will develop and utilize its natural endowments, i.e. agriculture, fishery and aquaculture, forestry, mineral and ecotourism. Becoming the FAmE Center of the country requires increasing the productivity of the region’s fishery and agro-forestry sectors through processing and value adding activities and harnessing its tourism industry by particularly developing its vast ecotourism potentials through massive promotions and provision of strategic infrastructure support. “While mining will remain as a key sector, in the interest of sustainable development and protecting ecological integrity, mining activities will be limited to existing mining areas excluding watersheds within the mining concessions. A moratorium on the issuance of new Mineral Production Sharing Agreements (MPSAs) or Exploration Permits (EPs) will be advocated to National Government.  Strict enforcement of environmental laws and regulations will be observed to protect the integrity of the environment.  Rehabilitation of mined-out areas will be strictly undertaken. Value adding and processing of minerals will likewise be pursued rather than just mere extraction of mineral ores,” the RDP states.

The RDP recognizes the fact that the mining industry has become the top contributor to the GRDP for the past years. National and local government support to the mining industry contributed to its substantial growth in the last decade. On the subject of mining, strategies in the RDP include the establishment of Minahang Bayan areas where activities of small-scale miners will be closely monitored in order to ensure their compliance with environmental laws and policies.  On the same note, the Social Development and Management Program fund will also be utilized to ensure that host and neighboring communities have sustainable and eco-friendly livelihood projects.

A transition period should be in place for communities that rely heavily on mining. During this time, alternatives to mining should be identified to introduce sustainable sources of income for the people in the region,” Usec. Navarro imparted. Usec. Navarro stated further that the regulation of mining activities will assist the region in reaching its goal to become the Fishery, Agro-Forestry, Mineral, and Ecotourism (FAmE) Center of the Philippines by 2022.

As articulated in the RDP, mined-out areas will be rehabilitated and transformed into ecoparks for recreation and tourism purposes which will generate employment and create economic opportunities for communities.

We should develop more economic drivers that create a balance of production and environmental protection,” NEDA Caraga Regional Director Cariño said.

Audiovisual presentations entitled Ang Atong Paglambo and The Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 were also viewed by the participants.  Part of the program was a presentation of diverse perspectives and insights called Malasakit, Pagbabago at Patuloy na Pag-unlad: Sectoral Voices on the PDP and RDP’s broad strategies given by Ms. Concepcion C. Asis of People Power Volunteers for Reform; Mr. Sisinio V. Narisma of Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Dr. Anthony M. Penaso of Caraga State University.

A mélange of Caraga artists gave an exceptional rendition of The Flame of FAmE: An artistic tale of the RDP 2017-2022 so that the participants will be able to visualize and internalize the promise of economic opportunities and progressive future in store for Caraganons which are vital to the establishment of the foundation for inclusive growth, high-trust society and a globally competitive and climate-resilient knowledge economy as envisioned by the National Government.  It was followed by the ceremony of igniting the Flame of FAmE which was led by Usec. Navarro and select stakeholders.  Usec. Navarro and Dir. Cariño led the Unveiling of the Philippine Development Plan and the Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 which ensued after the ceremonial ignition of the Flame of FAmE. As the hardbound copies of the Philippine Development Plan and the Caraga Regional Development Plan 2017-2022 were viewed, the invited guests and stakeholders were invited to take part in a congregational dance led by Caraga artists and other performers.

After the program, a press conference was held and participated by NEDA Officials, Philippine Information Agency Caraga Regional Office and reporters from various media outfits where various issues and concerns were raised and discussed.


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MGB RXIII Chemists take part in 32nd Philippine Chemistry Congress

Chemists from the Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII took part in the 32nd Philippine Chemistry Congress on May 31 to June 2, 2017 at the Asturias Hotel in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.

The theme of this year’s congress is “Chemistry. Changes. Choices.” Department of Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato T. Dela Peña delivered the Keynote Speech. Approximately a thousand participants attended the event which aims to provide a stimulating setting and a chance to engage chemistry scholars and practitioners in the latest developments in the field, thus enabling them to pursue wise and good choices that will effect positive changes in society. During the event, the participants were able to realize their capabilities to spur changes and make worthy choices with full utilization of the potentials of chemistry in bringing about social transformation and economic progress.

The poster presentations, plenary and parallel sessions gave the participants the opportunity to choose topics that are relevant and applicable to their specific field of expertise. Topics of interests among chemists from the DENR-Mines and Geosciences Bureau were researches on Environmental Chemistry, Agricultural Chemistry, Food Chemistry and Instrumentation.

The plenary lecture delivered by Dr. Carlo A. Arcilla, Head of the Earth Materials Science Laboratory of the National Institute of Geological Sciences of University of the Philippines Diliman, is considered as one of the most informative and fascinating lectures during the event. Dr. Arcilla talked about “Geochemistry and Mining: Correcting Some Misconceptions.” He emphasized that only 0.4% of the total land area of the country is utilized as active mining areas for mineral commodities like gold, silver, copper, nickel, iron, etc. He stated that mining, like other developmental activities, causes total changes in the landscape and may cause temporary environmental degradation. But when fully rehabilitated after the exhaustion of ore deposits, the mining area can be brought back to its original state or may even offer a more productive land use with the production of other more economically viable products. He reminded everyone that mining is inevitable and responsible mining is attainable with the concerted efforts of all stakeholders. As a final point, Dr. Arcilla challenged chemists to help the economy by coming up with a technology to process locally mined ores and come up with processed export products with higher monetary exchange.

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18th Annual Technical Forum: An affirmation of MGB’s continuous pursuit of knowledge and professional development

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau conducted the 2016 Annual Technical Forum with the theme “The Mineral Industry and The Geosciences: Challenges and Opportunities in the Changing Times” on November 10-12, 2016 at the Widus Hotel in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga.

This year’s forum was hosted by MGB Regional Office No. III headed by OIC/Regional Director Lope O. Cariño, Jr.  Marking its 18th year, the said event is the first ever technical forum to be conducted outside Metro Manila.

As the keynote speaker, Regional Executive Director Israel C. Gaddi talked about his work stint at the Mines and Geosciences Bureau. He challenged the participants to preserve their dignity and integrity as MGB employees. Reminding everyone of their great accountability as public servants, Dir. Gaddi urged the participants to serve the public to the best of their abilities, practice honesty in their work, evade corruption and learn to live with people in their workplace. In addition, he expressed his hope that there will be more entries for next year’s technical forum.

The members of the Board of Judges were Regional Director Arnulfo Cabantog, Engr. Ludwig John Pascual and Engr. Manuel Banaag.

The official logo of the 2016 Annual Technical Forum was a pinnately compound leaf which symbolizes thirst for knowledge and professional development of each MGB employee.

A total of 26 technical papers were presented and several posters were exhibited. MGB personnel who participated in trainings abroad were asked to present posters. These posters contained the background of the training, training objectives, components of the training and relevance to MGB’s thrusts and priority programs.

During the forum, productive discussions on the scope of the technical papers presented were deliberated. The forum is an avenue to share views, experiences, and find solutions in an integrated manner to solve pressing issues especially on environmental concerns.

MGB Regional Office No. XIII presented a paper entitled Geohazard Assessment of River Scouring and Historical River Morphology of Daywan River in Claver, Surigao del Norte.  The authors of the paper are Mr. Romeo M. Dalodado, Chief of the Geosciences Division /Chief Geologist; Ms. Kate A. Boquilon, Geologist II; and Mr. Beda Louie O. Cagampang, Geologist II.  Ms. Boquilon presented the said technical paper.

As recipients of overseas trainings, three MGB employees took part in the poster presentation. Mr. Romeo M. Dalodado presented a poster about the Training Program on Capacity Development for Immediate Access and Effective Utilization of Satellite Information for Disaster Management. Component 1: Satellite Data Characteristics, Ways of Acquisition and Utilization for Post Disaster Analysis which was conducted in Jakarta, Indonesia on August 3-18, 2015. Ms. Cecilia S. Lerio-Consuegra attended the CCOP-JMG Advanced Course in Geochemical Analysis: Base Metals by ICP-OES and Gold by Fire Assay / Cupellation Techniques from March 8-15, 2015 at Kuantan, Pahang  Malaysia. Ms. Christie Q. Asumen-Apale participated in the User’s Operations Training Of Thermo Scientific NITON XL3t GOLDD+XRF Analyzer at Thermo Fischer Scientific (HK) Limited, Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong last March 3-4, 2015.

At the awarding ceremony, the paper entitled Subsidence Hazard Susceptibility for Mabini, Bohol by Mr. Lawrence R. Zamora, Ph.D., Ms. Kristalyn B. Jarical, Ms. Ollyn T. Balignot, Mr. Jordan B. Gahisan and Mr. Danilo De Guzman of MGB Regional Office No. IX won the Best Technical Paper. Mr. Lawrence R. Zamora, Ph.D. was also given the Best Presenter Award. The Best Policy Paper was awarded to Engr. Felizardo A. Gacad, Jr. of MGB Cordillera Administrative Region for his paper entitled The Acupan Contract Mining Project (ACMP): Looking Back. The Best Poster Presentation hailed from Region III entitled Management of Acid Forming Waste Rocks and Tailing Storage Facilities presented by Engr. Arthur P. Eulogio.


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MGB ROXIII attends Orientation on Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII attended the Orientation on Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA) for Five Component Cities of Caraga Region conducted by the Office of Civil Defense Caraga on September 2, 2016 at the Buenavista Hall of Almont Inland Resort in Butuan City.

The orientation was attended by participants from the Cities of Bislig and Tandag, Surigao del Sur and the City of Cabadbaran, Agusan del Norte.

During the first session of the orientation, an overview of the Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA) was presented by Mr. Amado M. Posas, Chief of the Disaster Risk Reduction Management (DRRM) Division of OCD Caraga. Engr. Lita L. Vinalay, Chief Meteorological Officer of the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (DOST-PAGASA) Butuan Station, discussed the revised Tropical Storm Category while Engr. Noel Ajoc of DOST Caraga explained the work and activities of their office and the use of technology for the PDRA. Mr. Jeffrey A. Ramo of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Caraga Regional Office talked about the Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment. The role of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Caraga Regional Office in PDRA was discussed by Mr. Angel Bert A. Casimilio. The vulnerable areas in Caraga was presented by Ms. Graziella C. Harting of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Caraga Regional Office. On the last session of the orientation, Ms. Kate A. Boquilon, Geologist II, of MGB ROXIII discussed the activities and role of MGB particularly the Geosciences Division in PDRA.

As explained by Mr. Posas, Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment is important because it is the process that evaluates a hazard’s level of risk given the degree of exposure and vulnerability in a specific area. It plays a vital role in policy formulation and decision making for both public and private organizations and other stakeholders in disaster risk reduction. The said assessments are made in order to facilitate a proactive rather than reactive approach to natural disasters that would strike our country.

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