THE Cebu Provincial Government earned less in sand and gravel extraction fees and permits last year compared with the past three years.
This, after the Provincial Capitol prioritized the protection of the environment.
During the start of the two-day 8th Minerals and Energy Summit yesterday, Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Baltazar Tribunalo said the Province earned more than P28.8 million from January to November 2016.
In 2015, the Province earned around P82 million.
Tribunalo, who was one of the speakers during the summit, explained that the reduction of the earnings was due to the Province’s careful selection of who can apply for quarry permits.
In the past, he said there were applicants who declared a specific amount of cubic meters of sand and gravel or area that they will quarry, but these were not followed.
The Province allowed only 214 quarry operators in 2016, which was the lowest in the last four years.
But it was also last year that the Province apprehended and impounded the highest number of vehicles that violated national laws.
It reached 823 compared to the 499 vehicles and 486 vehicles apprehended in 2014 and 2015, respectively.
The violations included overloading, absence of delivery receipts, absence of official receipts and accreditation sticker, and misdeclaration.
During the summit, the importance of the mining industry in the development of the community was highlighted.
The activity, which was held in Dohera Hotel, was organized by the Philippine Society Mining Engineers (PSME)-Visayas Chapter in coordination with the Mines and Geoscienes Bureau (MGB).
Department of Environment and Natural Resources Undersecretary Mario Luis Jacinto assured “responsible miners” that they have nothing to fear as long as they follow the policies of the government.
Those who violated the law, he said, will have to face the consequences of their acts.
Jacinto’s message was read before the summit’s participants by PSME President Engineer Armando Malicse.