Examining the Resilience of Public Participation Structures for Sustainable Mining in the Philippines

Authors / Editors: Gera, Weena Jade S.


ABSTRACT

This paper analyses the interplay of institutional-legal architecture, politico-structural conditions and civil society configurations and how it influences the resilience of public participation structures towards sustainable mining in the Philippines. It illustrates how intersecting forces of predominant political economic interests and emergent civil society networks navigate through legal frameworks to influence dependencies and the shifting boundaries of public engagement in mining governance. It argues that the country’s mining sector is in a state of impasse with a government struggling to restructure its mining policies to accommodate a growing public clamour for environmental and social protection while continuing to provide incentives to large-scale mining corporations within a neoliberal framework. This has expanded and created new spaces, including legal and juridical paths, for civil society to pursue accountability mechanisms and challenge entrenched constraints. However, this attempt by the government to reconcile incompatible interests in the mining sector, translates to an ambivalent framework of governance that could not identify its priority. This results to arbitrary policy compromises that exacerbate prevailing tensions amid power imbalances in the sector, leaving civil society in perpetual square-off against mining corporations.


Title of Book: Legal Aspects of Sustainable Development: Horizontal and Sectorial Policy Issues
Book Editors: V. Mauerhofer