San Roque Metals Incorporation (SRMI) started mining operations in Tubay in 2006, initially as a small-scale venture, but was awarded in 2008 and 2009 two Mineral Production Sharing Agreements (MPSA) [1;2]. Since the beginning of their operations, villagers as well as local governmental officers have complained about environmental destruction, negatively affected livelihood resources (i.e., fishing and farming), as well as health impacts, such as through increasing respiratory diseases through mining dust. SRMI was accused of violently forced evictions  and has several court cases pending since 2007, such as surpassing its small-scale mining limit and a filed case for plunder and theft [7;8]. Moreover, the tribal group who signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) complained that royalties, to which they are entitled because SRMI operates on their ancestral lands, remained unpaid .
Assessment missions by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)’s Environment Management Bureau (EMB) conducted during that time, stated that SRMI did not violate any law. However, the local assessment team was alleged to have accepted bribery.
In August 2010, more than 3,000 residents signed a 117-page petition demanding the stop of SRMI’s activities, stating environmental, livelihood and health impacts and failure of adequate relocation of 115 families, displaced by SRMI’s activities .
Local consultations and public hearings were conducted by the environment committee of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP), which validated the complaints filed by villagers of Barangay (village) la Fraternidad. Consequently, in November, 2010, the provincial board of Agusan del Norte endorsed the petition that urged president Aquino III to stop SRMI’s mining operations. The local government further passed resolutions to oppose SRMI’s mining operations, asking for the cancellation of the MPSA due to SRMI’s alleged failure to pay local taxes amounting to 100 million PHP (more than 2 million USD) .
Calls to stop the mine further increased when major floods hit 13 Barangays in Tubay municipality on February 3, 2011, caused by large rains and a breakdown of one of the siltation ponds of SRMI's open pit nickel mine. Two residents were drowned during the floods. While local government officials alleged SRMI to have a major responsibility in causing the floods, SRMI denied their stake in the disaster .
In response to the growing conflict and the many petitions of villagers and local officers, the MGB conducted a three month investigative mission, whose results were presented in February 2012 . The investigation team, consisting of several governmental units as well as university institutes, found SRMI guilty in six major issues concerning negative impacts on environment and communities. The named issues were hazardous mining methods; inadequate rehabilitation; lack of proper drainage system; failure to properly relocate displaced families; usage of a public road as a private road, denying access to locals; and lack of water treatment. While the MGB ordered periods of 30 to 60 days to resolve the different issues, environmental and rights group, such as ATM, urged to completely cancel SRMI's MPSA .
Almost in parallel, on February 28, 2012 military forces started bombing and combat operations in areas of the communities affected by SRMI mining and other mining companies, and around 60 families had to evacuate the area. Mining companies such as SRMI were previously allowed to employ the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and other military groups as private security forces. While the military stated that attacks were against rebels, indigenous group KASALO stated that “in fact our indigenous people brothers and sisters [are those] that are being driven away for the entry of large-scale mining in our lands.”  The Philippines have a long-standing history of mining and militarization associated with human rights violations and extrajudicial killings.
Two months later, a representative of the multi-partite monitoring team (MMT) led by the MGB, assessing SRMI’s situation in their quarter-yearly inspection, stated that “In my three-day stay here and as I go along with the team there was no [environmental] violation” . Currently, to the author's knowledge, SRMI’s mining operations go on, in spite of large local opposition. Social tensions due to militarization have increased, while communities face health and livelihood consequences of environmental destruction in Tubay.