Gina Lopez, open pit mining and water

I would say this Gina Lopez is a force of nature. You have to see it to believe it. I attended a session she had with a number of bloggers last week. Lopez had a number of things on her mind, Outside of government circles Lopez is battling moves to lift the ban on open pit mining. The ban was imposed by Lopez before she was rejected as the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary by the Commission on Appointment,

It seems that the Mining Industry Coordinating Council (MICC) has asked the DENR to consider lifting the ban.

Lopez strongly expressed her concern over the impact of open pit mining in the Philippines and abroad. This included but not limited to the negative effect it has on the human community and its environment — the flora, fauna and including the other resources of the Philippines. At this point I remember the film the Big Short.

Big Short is a film about the world economic crisis that happened after the crash of the US real estate market. The film tackles the corruption and con (yes con) that led up to collapse and continued with the cover-up and bail-out. It also covered the impact it had on the people affected by the crash. But tempting as it is to draw similarities to the story and open pit mining there is something that stood out for me. In the end of the film, One the protagonist; the one who predicted the crash abandoned trading and speculating on all commodities except for one water.

The Philippines is a water rich country. As such in the coming years water is going to be one of the most precious resource for humanity. We cannot do without it and the practice of open pit mining which will have negative effects on our water tables will effectively poison our water resources.

Cursing the country in effect making a water rich nation into a water starved nation. And that my friends is my fear on what might happen.

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