Water watch campaign organized
During the Provincial Development Council meeting recently, Teresita Acosta of FRENDS mentioned that several Civil Society Organizations (CSO) in the province organized the Nueva Vizcaya-Quirino Water Watch to conserve and protect water resources in the province.
The NVQ Water Watch campaign is in preparation with the celebration of Earth Day on April 22, wherein Senator Rizza Hontiveros and former DENR Secretary Gina Lopez are expected to attend. The campaign is also a move against the extension of the Financial and Technical Assistance Agreement (FTAA) of Oceana Gold which will expire on June 2019.
Governor Carlos M. Padilla joined the group in seeking support with the campaign, for the whole province is involved in the issue. “If mining gets stopped, there’s an assurance that the hole stays as it is and won’t escalate. Stop discussing what will happen but focus first on how to stop mining. Once the mining gets to an end, then it is the time to debate on the actions to be taken,” Padilla said.
Padilla also added that the same conclusion was made by Canadian adviser Bernard Ira Teich during the place branding project of the province that there should be no mining in the province as it pose threats in the environmental development of the province.
Engr. Edgardo Sabado, Provincial Planning and Development Officer, added that the just approved brand does not really fit with mining. If the brand has to be promoted, then it has to be lived with. If there is mining, it decreases the credibility of the brand.
According to a report, the mining corporation had just submitted an assessment on water of all the rivers near the mining area. Padilla requested that a copy of the report should be furnished to Acosta.
NVQ Water Watch is an advocacy and action group for clean and sustainable water supply, one of the offshoots of the 1st Nueva Vizcaya Water Summit held on September 21, 2018, which aimed to unite the people of water resources from all over northern and central Luzon towards a common stand against threats and challenges. #bg