Secretary Gina Lopez is a gift

Secretary Gina Lopez is a gift

A statement of support for DENR's campaign to protect people & the environment, written by Mr. Bong Eliab

- in Featured, Opinion

“Let us be protectors of creation, protectors of God’s plan inscribed in nature, protectors of one another and of the environment.” – Pope Francis

The DENR is under fire. The mining industry is assailing the leadership of DENR Secretary Gina Lopez. For her relentless efforts to suspend mining that harms people and mining that harms our watersheds, Secretary Gina is under attack.

The University Community Engagement and Advocacy Council, together with ECOTENEO and Fr. Joel E. Tabora, SJ, President of Ateneo de Davao University, expresses its full support to Secretary Gina Lopez in the suspension of mining firms which do not comply with the law. Some of these firms operate within functional watersheds; polluting the waters and rendering the watershed inutile.

Secretary Lopez has embodied in her actions the mandate of the DENR to ensure the wellbeing of citizens by protecting the environment. In the early months of her leadership and service, she has mobilized the youth and leaders from across all sectors towards a joint protection, conservation and management of our natural resources. As a nation, we are now approaching the frontier of sustaining and enjoying an environment that is clean, healthy and sustainable: an environment that we can share with the next generation.

We believe that there is NO GREATER ACT than to PROTECT our common and only home – nature that has nurtured us; an environment that provides for all we need to live.

We believe that matters of the Earth cannot be compromised while business interests can be moderated.

We continue to grow an economy that includes the poorest of the poor and not one that drives them to the margins. We support an economy that is not driven by or thriving at the expense of the sufferings of many.

We recognize that the environment is not separate from us. The environment is core to our human lives as much as our human persons complete the environment. When the Earth’s natural systems fail, so do we ail. When nature gives up, our life gives out.
We understand that the immediate impact of a mining closure is a displacement of mining workers.

We support the hiring of displaced miners in the rehabilitation of mining sites and transformation of these sites for ecotourism.

We support a more sustainable approach to economic progress. Mining does not have the monopoly in terms of moving forward in the economy. Sustainable enterprises ensure progress while caring for natural resources.

Our environment and many of its peoples have suffered enough from the shortsightedness of the few. The Earth’s wounds can heal only when we stop its abuses. Mother Earth and the communities it nurtures, need all of us.

We are called to be faithful daughters and sons who will come to her aid and to defend her very existence. We need people in the DENR who will brave the long nights and fight the good fight for Mother Earth. We need persons with the passion and the vision for OUR environmental mission.

If you are one with us in desiring to protect our environment in the care of our common home, please manifest your support with us.


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It’s easy to understand why people are outraged