JOINT PRESS STATEMENT
RECALL JAPEX ECC. STOP THE PLUNDER OF OUR NATURAL RESOURCES.
STOP OFF-SHORE MINING IN THE VISAYAS AND THE PHILIPPINES.
It is more than a year since the oil spill tragedy in Guimaras disrupted the lives of Filipinos, It is more than a year and the culprits involved are roaming freely in Philippine waters raking profit after profit at the expense of Philippine interests.
It is more than a year and yet the government haven't learn important lessons by pursuing oil explorations in the Visayas and other parts of the Philippines. These explorations aside from violating our Constitution and Patrimony is very successful in dislocating fishermen, destroying marine biodiversity, disrupting economic activity and threatened local and global food security.
JAPEX after wreaking havoc in Tañon strait will pursue development of resources in the area this October. Despite violating the provisions of the EIA law, the Fisheries Code, the NIPAS Act, and the basic law of the land including international policies was able to secure an ECC last March 6, 2007.
The idea of energy independence flaunted by the national government and its agencies is a hoax, since the corporations involved in various oil exploration activities within Philippine waters were given the sole authority to identify, develop, and sell oil reserves from our waters.
It is quiet ironic for our country to pursue extracting finite fossil fuel deposits when the rest of the countries around us are abandoning its dependence on fossil fuel due to climate change and global warming and are now on the path of developing clean and sustainable sources of energy.
International conservation organizations, local government units,and various NGO's have spent billions of dollars protecting and sustainably developing our marine resources and yet our national government is doing the exact opposite.
Based on these there is a need to recall the questionable ECC given to JAPEX and we would like to enjoin IBP Cebu Chapter in their call to stop all planned oil explorations in the Visayas. We would like to call for a full investigation over these projects from the provincial, regional and congressional level. We also would like to call on environmental advocates, the fisherfolks, and other stakeholders to rise above the occasion and call to protect our natural resources and call for genuine national development free from foreign control and exploitation.
Let us put an end to resource plunder and environmental destruction. Let us stand up against oil exploration and off-shore mining.
PAMANA Sugbo, DEFEND our Sea Coalition, PAMALAKAYA, Conservation Watch, Kinabuhi Inc People's Network for the Environment, FIDEC Inc.