Philippines suspends two more mines in environmental clampdown – by Enrico Dela Cruz (Reuters U.S. – August 11, 2016)

MANILA – The Philippine government has suspended operations at two more mines due to environmental violations in an ongoing audit of the country’s mining sector, officials said on Thursday.

The move raises the number of suspended mines to 10 – eight of them nickel ore producers – since the Southeast Asian nation launched a review of all mines on July 8.

The closures and the threat of more mines getting hit in the world’s top nickel ore supplier lifted prices of the metal to a one-year high of $11,030 a tonne on Wednesday. [MET/L]

The latest suspended mines are operated by Emir Mineral Resources Corp, which produced 150,000 tonnes of nickel ore last year, and Mt. Sinai Mineral Exploration Corp, which extracted 50,000 tonnes of chromite, Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Leo Jasareno told a media briefing.

Both mines are privately owned and located in the central Samar province, primarily supplying China.

The audit found that operations at the Emir Mineral and Mt. Sinai mines have caused silt build-up in coastal waters and deforestation, said Jasareno.

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