The use of open pit method of mining for the extraction of copper, gold, silver and/or complex ores is prohibited effective immediately. Mining contractors who have not commenced commercial operation but have approved Declarations of Mining Project Feasibility utilizing open pit mining are given a period of six (6) months to review their planned mining methods accordingly.
As subject of Administrative Order no. 2017-10 dated April 27, 2017, this supersedes all orders and other policy issuances or directives that are contrary or inconsistent with this Administrative Order which was published on Philippine Star on April 30, 2017 and received by the UP Law Center on May 3, 2017.
Open pit mining has been employed in the Philippine mining industry mainly for the extraction and disposition of metallic minerals such as copper, gold, silver and complex ores and non-metallic minerals like perlite, limestone, and basalt.
Consistent with the EO 192 the DENR shall have the powers and functions to exercise supervision and control over forest lands, alienable and disposable lands and mineral resources, and promulgate rules and regulations in accordance with law governing the exploration, development, conservation, extraction, disposition, use and such other activities tending to cause depletion and degradation of natural resources.
Corollary, Section 2 of RA 7942, the Philippine mining Act of 1995 provides that it shall be the responsibility of the State to promote the rational exploration, development, utilization and conservation of mineral resources through the combined efforts of government and the private sector in order to enhance national growth in a way that effectively safeguards the environment and protect the rights of affected communities.