Mining is the process of extracting valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth.
Mining can be done in a variety of ways, depending on the type of deposit and the desired end product. Common methods include open-pit mining, underground mining, and placer mining.
Placer mining is a method of mining minerals from alluvial deposits, which are deposits of sand and gravel in rivers and streams. This method is commonly used for gold and other precious metals.
Open-pit mining is a method of extracting minerals from the earth by creating an open pit or excavation. It is typically used for shallow deposits of minerals like coal, iron, and copper.
Underground mining is a method of mining minerals from below the earth’s surface. This method is often used for minerals that are too deep to be extracted using open-pit mining methods.
Reclamation is the process of restoring land that has been disturbed by mining to its natural state. This may involve re-vegetating the land, controlling erosion, and mitigating other environmental impacts.
Almost any mineral can be mined, including precious metals like gold and silver, industrial metals like copper and iron, and non-metallic minerals like limestone and salt.
The process of mining varies depending on the type of resource being extracted, but generally, the stages of mining include:
- Exploration: This is the initial stage of mining, which involves the search for mineral deposits or resources. Geologists and mining companies use various methods to locate potential deposits, such as satellite imagery, geophysical surveys, and drilling.
- Site Development: After a potential deposit has been identified, the site needs to be prepared for mining. This involves constructing access roads, building infrastructure for mining operations, and setting up facilities for workers.
- Extraction: The actual extraction of the resource takes place in this stage. Depending on the type of resource being mined, different methods can be used, such as underground mining, surface mining, or placer mining. During this stage, the extracted material is processed to extract the valuable component.
- Processing: After extraction, the material needs to be processed to extract the valuable component. This can involve crushing, grinding, washing, and other techniques to separate the desired mineral from the waste material.
- Refining: After the processing stage, the mineral or resource may need to be refined further to remove impurities or to create a purer form of the material.
- Closure and Reclamation: Once the mining is complete, the site needs to be closed and reclaimed. This involves removing all equipment and infrastructure, restoring the site to its natural state, and monitoring the area for any environmental impact caused by the mining activities.
Mining in the Philippines is regulated by several government agencies, primarily the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), which is a line bureau of the DENR.
The following are some of the key regulations and policies related to mining in the Philippines:
- Republic Act No. 7942, or the Philippine Mining Act of 1995: This law governs the exploration, development, and utilization of mineral resources in the country. It provides guidelines for the granting of mining permits, leases, and contracts.
- Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC): All mining projects in the Philippines are required to secure an ECC from the DENR before they can start operations. The ECC ensures that mining activities comply with environmental laws and regulations.
- People’s Small-Scale Mining Act of 1991: This law regulates small-scale mining activities in the Philippines, which are often carried out by individuals or small groups of miners.
- Philippine Clean Water Act of 2004: This law provides regulations for the management of water resources in the Philippines, including those affected by mining activities.
- Executive Order No. 79: This order, issued in 2012, imposes a moratorium on the issuance of new mining permits until a new revenue-sharing scheme is in place, among other provisions.
- Mining-related guidelines and policies: The MGB also issues guidelines and policies related to mining, such as the 2016 Mine Safety and Health Standards and the 2019 Guidelines on the Assessment and Evaluation of Metallic Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves.
Overall, the regulations and policies related to mining in the Philippines aim to ensure responsible and sustainable mining practices that take into account the environmental and social impacts of mining activities.
Mining can have significant environmental impacts, including soil erosion, water pollution, and habitat destruction. However, many modern mining practices have been designed to minimize these impacts.
Mining can be a dangerous occupation, with risks including cave-ins, explosions, and equipment failures. However, modern mining techniques and safety equipment have greatly reduced the risk of accidents.
Mining plays a significant role in the global economy by providing essential minerals and metals that are used in various industries, including construction, electronics, and manufacturing. Here are some key points that highlight the importance of mining to the global economy:
- Job creation: Mining creates employment opportunities for millions of people worldwide. According to the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM), the mining industry directly employs over 3.7 million people globally, with many more employed indirectly in related industries such as transportation and manufacturing.
- Revenue generation: The mining industry generates significant revenue for countries that have mineral resources. Mining exports can be a major source of foreign exchange earnings, and mining companies often contribute to the national economy through taxes, royalties, and other fees.
- Resource development: Mining is essential for the development of resources such as metals and minerals, which are needed for infrastructure, transportation, and other key sectors of the economy. For example, copper is a critical material used in construction, transportation, and electronics, while iron ore is used in steel production.
- Technological innovation: The mining industry has been a driver of technological innovation, developing new methods and technologies to improve efficiency and reduce environmental impact.
- Social and economic development: Mining can also contribute to social and economic development by creating opportunities for local businesses, improving infrastructure, and supporting community development programs.
Overall, mining is an important sector of the global economy that provides essential minerals and metals for industrial and technological development, creates jobs and generates revenue, and contributes to social and economic development.
KEA Mining and Quarrying Services has active mining projects at multiple sites in the Zambales province on the island of Luzon. We are actively performing exploration and assessment ops at dozens of sites throughout the Philippine islands.
The Philippines has a total land area of 30 million hectares, nine million of which have large amounts of high-quality mineral deposits of gold, nickel, copper, iron, and chromite, among others. 9 million hectares amounts to 30% of the total land area which includes over 7,000 islands!
The Philippine mining industry contributed ₱102.3 billion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020 despite economically destructive lockdowns and travel restrictions imposed by the government. That amounts to over 28% of the entire economic output of the Philippines.
The legal requirements for small mines in the Philippines are primarily governed by the People’s Small-Scale Mining Act of 1991, which regulates small-scale mining activities in the country. Here are some of the key requirements:
- Small-scale mining permit: Small-scale miners are required to secure a permit from the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) before they can start mining operations. The permit is valid for a period of five years and can be renewed.
- Environmental compliance certificate (ECC): Small-scale mining operations are also required to secure an ECC from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) before they can start operations. The ECC ensures that mining activities comply with environmental laws and regulations.
- Work plan: Small-scale miners are required to submit a work plan to the MGB, which outlines the proposed mining activities, the area to be mined, and the methods to be used. The work plan should also include a description of the environmental management measures to be implemented.
- Safety and health program: Small-scale mining operations are required to implement a safety and health program to ensure the safety and well-being of their workers.
- Payment of taxes and fees: Small-scale miners are required to pay taxes and fees, such as the excise tax on minerals, royalties, and permit fees.
- Compliance with regulations: Small-scale mining operations are required to comply with all applicable laws and regulations related to mining, environmental protection, and worker safety.
Overall, the legal requirements for small mines in the Philippines aim to ensure that small-scale mining activities are carried out responsibly and sustainably, while also protecting the environment and the health and safety of workers.
KEA Mining and Quarrying Services Sells:
- Iron Ore ranging from 58% assay grade to 67%
- Copper ore ranging from 8% assay grade up to 30%
- Silica Quartz
- Silica Sand