Berong Nickel Corporation (BNC), a subsidiary of DMCI Mining, is spending P110 million to decommission and rehabilitate its Berong mine in Quezon, Palawan over a six-year period.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, DMCI Mining’s parent DMCI Holdings Inc. said “Most of the budget will be used to stabilize the mined out area through benching, drainage construction and planting of endemic and indigenous trees.”
The Berong final rehabilitation program covers 109 hectares of surface mine, 209 hectares of silt control structures and 25 hectares of stockpile area. The program is expected to generate 135 jobs.
“Our end goal is to restore and enhance the mined land so its economic and ecological value is similar to, if not better than, when we started operations in the area,” said DMCI Mining President Tulsi Das C. Reyes.
After rehabilitation, the disturbed areas could be used for eco-tourism, agro-forestry and inland fish farming by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), local government units (LGUs) and host communities.
Around 14 hectares of mine access road will also be rehabilitated and turned over to the community for their use.
The Berong mine opened in October 2006 and is expected to be fully depleted by year-end. Aside from generating 1,634 direct and indirect jobs, the mining operations yielded 10.3 million wet metric tons (WMT) of nickel ore and P2.6 billion worth of mining duties, royalties and taxes.
Community investments through the BNC Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) also reached around P185 million. These investments include infrastructure, livelihood assistance, scholarships, among others.