Citinickel's Toronto Narra mine in Palawan, Philippines

Tailing spills, environmental degradation and livelihood loss: Indigenous groups want to stop Citinickel mines in Palawan.


Description
The Toronto mine, located in Narra municipality, Palawan, is one of the two mining concessions hold by Citinickel Mining and Development Corporation (CMDC) (see “related conflicts” below). The Mining Production Sharing Agreement (MPSA) for the Toronto mine was granted on March 01, 2007 and covers an area of 770ha in Palwan [1]. Palawan has a special law, the Strategic Environment Plan for Palawan Act RA 7611 that establishes a development framework in the province and should regulate economic activities, such as mining, in environmentally critical areas.
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Basic Data
NameCitinickel's Toronto Narra mine in Palawan, Philippines
CountryPhilippines
ProvinceSouther Palawan
SiteBarangay San Isidro, Municipality of Narra
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Tailings from mines
Mineral processing
Land acquisition conflicts
Mineral ore exploration
Specific CommoditiesRare metals
Iron ore
nickel, chromite
Project Details and Actors
Project Details
The Narra nickel mine is one of two mining concessions hold by the Citinickel Mining and Development Corporation (CMDC) in Palawan; approved by the MGB on 01.03.2007. The second mining site is the Pulot nickel mine, located in Sofronia Espanola town, Palawan (see related conflicts, below). Citinickel holds in total mining concession over 2,176ha [8].
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Project Area (in hectares)770
Level of Investment (in USD)1,160,000,000 (as of 2011 for all Citinickels mining operations in Palwan)
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date01/03/2007
Company Names or State EnterprisesCitinickel Mines and Development Corporation (CMDC) from Philippines
Oriental Peninsula Resources Group Inc. (ORE) (ORE) from Philippines
Citimax Group Inc. from Philippines
Golden Spin Realty, Inc. from Philippines
Billion Apex Development Ltd. from Philippines
King Crown Group Limited from Hong Kong SAR, China
Fuying Holdings Limited from Hong Kong SAR, China
PCD Nominee Corporation from Philippines
Philippine Depository and Trust Corporation, Inc. (PDTC) (PDTC) from Philippines - investment
Relevant government actorsMines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), Republic of Philippines

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)
International and Financial InstitutionsThe Philippine Stock Exchange Inc. (PSE) from Philippines - capital markets
Bankers Association of the Philippines from Philippines - banking, finance
Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines (FINEX) (FINEX) from Philippines - finance
Investment House Association of the Philippines from Philippines - finance
Social Security System Philippines from Philippines
Citibank Philippines from Philippines - banking, finance
Hongkong Shanghai Banking Corp. LTD from Hong Kong SAR, China - banking, finance
Deutsche Bank (DB) from Germany
Development Bank of the Philippines from Philippines - banking, finance
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersIndigenous organization Pinagtibukang Kaundang-undangan it Palaw’an (PKP);

Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM);

Kalikasan-People’s Network for the Environment (Kalikasan PNE);

Bigkis at Lakas ng Katutubo sa Timog Katagalugan (BALATIK);

Advocates of Science & Technology for the People (AGHAM);

Kalipunan ng Katutubong Mamamayan sa Pilipinas, Defend Patrimony Alliance;

Task Force-Justice for Environment Defenders;

Katribu Party-list and the Kalikasan Party-list, and others.
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups MobilizingFarmers
Fishermen
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Ethnically/racially discriminated groups
Local scientists/professionals
Religious groups
Indigenous Palaw'an
Forms of MobilizationCommunity-based participative research (popular epidemiology studies, etc..)
Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Waste overflow, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Mine tailing spills
Potential: Air pollution, Soil erosion, Floods (river, coastal, mudflow)
Health ImpactsVisible: Other environmental related diseases
Potential: Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide, Health problems related to alcoholism, prostitution, Violence related health impacts (homicides, rape, etc..)
OtherExposure to contaminated environmental resources
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Social problems (alcoholism, prostitution, etc..), Violations of human rights, Militarization and increased police presence
Outcome
Project StatusIn operation
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseApplication of existing regulations
Project temporarily suspended
After a temporary suspension and a fine to be paid by the company, the project was allowed to continue.
Development of AlternativesLocal organisation PKP wants to stop mining in the areas. They have further joined countrywide calls to stop the Mining Act of 1995.
Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.The project goes on.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

Philippine Mining Act of 1995
[click to view]

The Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act of 1997 (IPRA)
[click to view]

Philippine Clean Water Act of 2004
[click to view]

Strategic Environment Plan for Palawan Act RA 7611
[click to view]

Links

[4] Bulatlat online (26/03/2015) "Palawan indigenous people call for stop to Citinickel mines" (accessed 15/04/2015)
[click to view]

[1] Oriental Peninsula Company website (accessed 15/04/2015)
[click to view]

[2] GMA News online (13/06/2014): "MGB suspends Citinickel Mines operations in Palawan" (accessed 16/04/2015)
[click to view]

[3] KALIKASAN (03/12/2012): "Death of two rivers in Palawan imminent if Citinickel mining continues"
[click to view]

[6] The Bellwether report by MAFI (29/06/2012).
[click to view]

[7] The Philippine Star (23/08/2011): "Investments jump 53% to P369 B in Jan-July"
[click to view]

Rappler (Jan 21, 2013) on the incident
[click to view]

[5] ATM Press release (12/06/2014) :"Environmental group urges MGB to cancel CMDC operations in Palawan"
[click to view]

Media Links

Video: Even the soul of Indigenous People is threatened by Mining
[click to view]

News report "Citinickel mines, pinagmumulta ng DENR dahil sa oil spill sa Palawan"
[click to view]

Other Documents

Map Source: http://orientalpeninsula.com/business-projects/project-locations/
[click to view]

[8] MGB document on mining concessions in 2014
[click to view]

Villagers protest against Citinickel mines Source: http://bulatlat.com/main/2015/03/26/palawan-indigenous-people-call-for-stop-to-citinickel-mines/
[click to view]

Strategic Environment Plan for Palawan Act RA 7611
[click to view]

Strategic Environment Plan for Palawan Act RA 7611 (amended)
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorA. Scheidel (ICTA-UAB) and Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM)
Last update27/04/2015
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