DENR still investigating Philex mine waste spill

Posted at 09/04/12 12:43 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Environment and National Resources needs one more week to conclude its probe on the new waste spill at Philex Mining's gold mine in Benguet.

Mines and Geosciences Bureau director Leo Jasareno said they have a team investigating the mine to determine who should be held liable for the leak, which has contaminated a nearby river.

He explained the investigation is being hampered by bad weather.

"The offical report would have to take into account everything that has been discharged including those that happened after the recurrence of the leakage," he said on ANC's Business Nightly.

"The issue of liability has to be addressed. We have to know whether or not the company has been complying with regulations or this incident happened because of fortuitous reasons."

In a disclosure today, Philex Mining said this is the fourth discharge of waste material from the tailings pond, since the first incident on August 1.

Philex asserted it has not been remiss in repairing the leak, but the repair takes time.

"Na-plug na yung cause of discharge before because of heavy rainfall. Ngayon ay inaayos natin para mabalik sa dating integrity yung tailings pond... It takes time to come up with a complete solution to the problem,"

Mike Toledo, Philex Mining senior vice president said. - ANC