The Xstrata-controlled Tampakan project has become one of the most contentious in the Philippines, and one that the Mines and Communities website has critiqued for several years.
There are many reasons for this – not least that, if it goes ahead, the mine will become the largest in the Philippines. But there are many specific problems with the project, and these have mobilised civil society, leading to the local provincial government enacting a ban on open-pit mining. Independent experts have criticised the company’s Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) on behalf of local people opposing the project.
This team comprises local and national professionals, partnered by Clive Wicks and Robert Goodland on behalf of the UK-based Working Group on Mining in the Philippines. A huge public meeting was held where Clive Wicks spoke directly to local stakeholders, and challenged the company over the contents of the team’s report, particularly by quantifying the costs of worst case scenarios.
Dramatising one of the problems dogging this project, a company employee – one responsible for land acquisition – has been shot dead.