On April 11, 2017, Sec. Gina Lopez visits Marinduque to address environmental issues particular on mining concerns. Upon arrival, she interviewed residents of Barangay Capayang, Mogpog, Marinduque who were directly affected by the previous mining operation. She briefly conversed with them regarding the current situation and effects of the Consolidated Mines Inc. (CMI) mining on their community. Also, former co-owner of CMI, Mr. Joven M. Lilles was also interviewed and narrated how the mining company closed down.

Sec. Gina Lopez addresses Marinduque’s environmental issues

Likewise, Mayor of Mogpog, Augusto Leo Livelo who was also present together with OIC, PENRO Imelda M. Diaz were asked by Sec. Lopez to work hand in hand to develop and rehabilitate the mining site and convert it into ecotourism destination that will generate jobs for the community.

After the site visit at CMI, Mogpog, Secreatary Lopez conducted an aerial survey at the Marcopper Mine Site in Sta. Cruz.

Afterwards, Secreatary Lopez was warmly welcomed at the Recreational Sports Complex, Boac by the DENR PENRO Marinduque employees together with the famously known morrions of the province, followed by the traditional “putong” by the Provincial Government employees at the Provincial Capitol.

Later in the afternoon, she presented the DENR paradigm and her advocacy mainly focused on the Sustainable Area Development approach through bamboo plantation to rehabilitate mined out areas as well as river banks that will help promote economic growth. However, she reiterated that economic growth is not based on money alone rather the happiness of the people. She added that the welfare and happiness of the people is vital in economic growth. Moreover, according to her, if the area is ecological and well taken care of then it will be economical. Creating an economic zones that will promote love and happiness among people is her objective, not just planting trees.

Afterwards, she also introduced the use of Biochar which according to her can enhance soil productivity thereby increasing crop yeilds in a short period of time which will minimize the use of chemicals in agricultural products.

Lastly, as an encouragement, she strongly urge everyone to care for the environment and believe that Marinduque can and will be able to restore mined out areas back into habitable and healthy environment for the present and future generations, likewise, generating jobs for the less fortunate people. She seeks the joint efforts from the different organizations, LGUs, NGAs, NGOs, People's Organizations, commutinies and other stakeholders for the success of this endeavor. ###