On July 1, 1993, Marcventure Mining and Development Corporation (MMDC) received a mining permit covering 4,799ha, located in the Diwata Mountain Range, Cantilan, Surigao del Sur . In 2008, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) granted an Environment Compliance Certificate (ECC) to the company, in spite of an overlap of their project area with a central watershed forest reserve, declared as such in the 2009 Presidential Proclamation No. 1747 . The watershed area is crucial to the province’s irrigation and water supply, as well as livelihoods, lives and indigenous cultures [2;3;4]. It further contains one of the few remaining primary forests and biodiversity hotspots, such as the habitat of the endangered Philippine eagle, making it a key target for conservation efforts .