MANILA, Philippines -- Authorities are worried about the contamination of a river in Barangay Runruno, Nueva Vizcaya due to illegal mining.
The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) said although the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has ordered closure of over 100 tunnels in a gold mine in the area, the river was already contaminated by chemicals used in mining.
The river flows to the irrigation fields of the province.
Authorities said the contamination could have been prevented if mining was stopped or regulated properly.
The NBI said the illegal mining in the area cannot be blamed just on top local officials because even the barangay captain and kagawad may be involved.
Barangay captain Dodong Rafael admitted to his failure to stop mining in his area.
He explained mining is the only source of livelihood for many residents. -- Report from Jekki Pascual, ABS-CBN News