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LAW ON NATURAL RESOURCES (LNR) SYLLABUS

Prepared by Atty. Jose Y. Dalisay III/ November 2013

PART ONE

CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS (1987 Constitution)


Article I, Section 1: The National Territory
Article II, Section 16: Right to a balanced and healthful ecology
Article XII, Section 2: The Regalian Doctrine
Article XII, Section 3: Lands of the public domain
Article XII, Section 5: Ancestral lands and ancestral domains
Article XII, Sections 7-8: Alienage of lands
REGALIAN DOCTRINE:
Cruz vs Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources, et al. (G.R. No.
135385, Dec. 6, 2000). Also read the Separate Opinion of Justice Reynato
Puno, and his discussion of the concepts of native title and ancestral
domains/lands.
Secretary of Environment & Natural Resources, et al. vs Mayor Jose S. Yap, et
al. (G.R. No. 167707, October 8, 2008)
NATIVE TITLE (Sec. 3[l] of R.A. 8371 or the Indigenous Peoples Rights

Act): lands never owned by the State. -- Mateo Cario vs Insular


Government (41 Phil. 935 [Feb. 23, 1909])
ABSENT POSITIVE PROOF, LAND IS PRESUMED TO BE INALIENABLE PUBLIC
DOMAIN:

Pacifico M. Valiao vs Republic (G.R. No. 170757, November 28, 2011):


public lands not shown to have been reclassified by the State as
alienable agricultural land remain part of the inalienable public
domain. Property of the public domain is beyond the commerce of
man and not susceptible of private appropriation and acquisitive
prescription. Occupation thereof in the concept of owner no matter
how long cannot ripen into ownership and be registered as a
title. The burden of proof in overcoming the presumption of State
ownership of the lands of the public domain is on the person
applying for registration (or claiming ownership), who must prove
that the land subject of the application is alienable or disposable. To
overcome this presumption, incontrovertible evidence must be
established that the land subject of the application (or claim) is
alienable or disposable.

RECLAIMED LANDS:

Francisco I. Chavez vs Public Estates Authority & Amari Coastal Bay


Development Corp. (G.R. No. 133250, May 6, 2003, and
reconsideration on July 9, 2002): foreshore and submerged areas
belong to the public domain and are inalienable unless reclaimed,
classified as alienable lands open to disposition and further declared
no longer needed for public service. The fact that alienable lands of
the public domain were transferred to the PEA and issued land
patents or certificates of title in PEAs name did not automatically
make such lands private.
Republic vs City of Paranaque. (G.R. No. 191109, July 18, 2012): The
reclaimed lands are still part of the public domain, owned by the
State and, therefore, exempt from payment of real estate taxes. The
subject lands are reclaimed lands, specifically portions of the
foreshore and offshore areas of Manila Bay.
FOREST LANDS:

City Government of Baguio vs Atty. Brain Masweng, Regional Officer,


NCIP-CAR, et al. (G.R. No. 180206, February 4, 2009): the courts
have no jurisdictional competence to adjudicate forest lands. See
also: The Baguio Regreening Movement, Inc., et al. vs Atty. Brain
Masweng, et al. (G.R. No. 180882, February 27, 2013). These cases
also discuss ancestral domains/lands.
Republic vs Celestina Naguiat (G.R. No. 134209, January 24, 2006):
declassification of forest and mineral lands, as the case may be, and
their conversion into alienable and disposable lands need an
express and positive act from the government.
Secretary of Environment & Natural Resources, et al. vs Mayor Jose S.
Yap, et al. (G.R. No. 167707, October 8, 2008): Except for lands
already covered by existing titles, Boracay was an unclassified land
of the public domain prior to Proclamation No. 1064. Such
unclassified lands are considered public forest under PD No.
705. The DENR and the National Mapping and Resource Information
Authority certify that Boracay Island is an unclassified land of the
public domain.
ARE MANGROVE SWAMPS ALSO FOREST LANDS?

Director of Forestry vs Ruperto A. Villareal (G.R. No. L-32266, February


27, 1989)
THE STATE OWNS THE MINERALS UNDER TITLED AGRICULTURAL LANDS:

Maxima Nieto de Comilang vs Abdon Delenela, et al. (G.R. No. L-18897,


March 31, 1964): the provisions of the Mining Law expressly declare
that the ownership of land for other purposes does not include the
minerals, and that mineral rights are not included in agricultural
land patents.

Republic vs Court of Appeals (G.R. No. L-43938, April 15, 1988, 160
SCRA 228): rights over the land are indivisible and the land itself
cannot be half agricultural and half mineral. The classification must
be categorical; the land must be either completely mineral or
completely agricultural. In the instant case, the land which was
originally classified as forest land ceased to be so and became
mineral and completely mineral once the mining claims were
perfected. // Once minerals are discovered in the land, whatever the
use to which it is being devoted at the time, such use may be
discontinued by the State to enable it to extract the minerals in the
exercise of its sovereign prerogative. The land is thus converted to
mineral land and may not be used by any private party, including
the registered owner thereof, for any other purpose that will impede
the mining operations to be undertaken therein. For the loss
sustained by such owner, he is of course entitled to just
compensation under the Mining Laws or in appropriate expropriation
proceedings.
MAY AN ALIEN OWN LAND IN THE PHILIPPINES?

Republic vs Register of Deeds of Roxas City, Elizabeth Lee and Pacita


Yu-Lee (G.R. No. 158230, July 16, 2008): If land is invalidly
transferred to an alien who subsequently becomes a citizen or
transfers it to a citizen, the flaw in the original transaction is
considered cured and the title of the transferee is rendered valid.
In re: Petition for Separation of Property. Elena Buenaventura Muller vs
Helmut Muller (G.R. No. 149615, August 29, 2006)
Philip Matthews vs Benjamin A. Taylor and Joselyn C. Taylor (G.R. No.
164584, June 22, 2009)
Willem Beumer vs Avelina Amores (G.R. No. 195670, December 3,
2012)
MAY ALIENS OWN REAL ESTATE IN THE FORM OF CONDOMINIUM UNITS IN THE
PHILIPPINES? Jacobus Bernhard Hulst vs PR Builders, Inc. (G.R. No.

156364, September 25, 2008)


CONSTITUTIONALITY
THE MINING LAW OF 1995: La Bugal-Blaan Tribal Association, Inc., et al. vs
Victor O. Ramos, et al. (G.R. No. 127882, January 27, 2004), the Supreme
Court en banc declared seven provisions of the Mining Law of 1995 (R.A. No.
7942) unconstitutional. Less than a year later, on December 1, 2004, the
Supreme Court promulgated a resolution reversing its earlier decision. Read
both of these two decisions.
IMPAIRMENT OF CONTRACTS: ARE FORESTRY LICENSES, PERMITS AND AGREEMENTS
CONTRACTS THAT MAY NOT BE IMPAIRED?

Republic of the Philippines, represented by the DENR vs Pagadian City


Timber Co., Inc. (G.R. No. 159308, September 16, 2008)
Heherson Alvarez vs PICOP Resources, Inc. (G.R. No. 162243, December 3,
2009)

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT: PUTTING METRO MANILAS GARBAGE IN A WATERSHED
RESERVATION -- Province of Rizal, et al. vs Executive Secretary, et al. (G.R. No.

129546, December 13, 2005).


ENVIRONMENTALLY CRITICAL PROJECTS / PROJECTS IN ENVIRONMENTALLY-CRITICAL
AREAS: PUBLIC CONSULTATION & OTHER REQUIREMENTS --

Bangus Fry Fisherfolk, et al. vs Hon. Enrico Lanzanas, et al. (G.R. No.
131442, July 10, 2003)
Boracay Foundation vs Province of Aklan, et al. (G.R. No. 196870, June 26,
2012)
Special People Inc., Foundation vs Nestor M. Canda, et al. (G.R. No.
160932, January 14, 2013)

MINING RIGHTS vs FORESTRY RIGHTS: PICOP vs Base Metals Mineral


Resources Corp. and the Mines Adjudication Board (G.R. No. 163509,
December 6, 2006)
POACHING: Sea Lion Fishing Corp. vs People, G.R. No. 172678, March 23,
2011. Violation of RA 8550 (Phil. Fisheries Code of 1998)

PART TWO
JURISDICTION
DENR SECRETARY:

Director of Lands vs Court of Appeals (G.R. No. 79684,

February 19, 1991)


EXHAUSTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE REMEDIES:

Leonardo A. Paat, et al. vs Court of Appeals, et al. (G.R. No. 111107,


January 10, 1997).
Felipe Calub and Ricardo Valencia, DENR Catbalogan, Samar vs Court of
Appeals, et al. (G.R. No. 115634, April 27, 2000

MINING POLLUTION: Republic vs Marcopper Mining Corp. (G.R. No. 137174, July

10, 2000)
WHEN IS A CASE ONE FOR POLLUTION? Shell Phils. Exploration B.V. vs Efren

Jalos, et al. (G.R. No. 179918, September 8, 2010)

POLLUTION OF LAGUNA LAKE: WHICH HAS JURISDICTION THE POLLUTION


ADJUDICATION BOARD OF THE DENR, OR THE LAGUNA LAKE DEVELOPMENT
AUTHORITY? -- Pacific Steam Laundry, Inc. vs LLDA (G.R. No. 165299,

December 18, 2009)


A MAYOR MAY NOT SET ASIDE OR REVERSE THE DENRS FINDING ON POLLUTION:

Technology Developers, Inc. vs Court of Appeals (G.R. No. 94759, January


21, 1991)
Laguna Lake Devt Authority vs Court of Appeals, et al. (G.R. No. 110120,
March 16, 1994)

SALVAGED FOREST PRODUCTS: LGU SHARES REGULATORY POWER WITH DENR:

Leovegildo R. Ruzol vs Sandiganbayan and People, G.R. Nos. 186739-960,


April 17, 2013.
MAY THE LTFRB OR DOTC BE ORDERED TO COMPEL VEHICLE OWNERS TO USE
COMPRESSED NATURAL GAS, FOR CLEANER AIR? Hilarion M. Henares, Jr., Victor

C. Agustin, et al. vs Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board


and DOTC (G.R. No. 158290, October 23, 2006)
SMALL-SCALE MINING PERMITS. League of Provinces of the Phils. vs DENR (G.R.
No. 175368, April 11, 2013): the DENR Secretary has the power of review in the
resolution of disputes, under Section 24 of RA 7076 (People's Small-Scale Mining Act
of 1991) and Section 22 of its IRR.

RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR ENVIRONMENTAL CASES


TEMPORARY PROTECTION ORDER: Boracay Foundation, vs Province of Aklan, et

al. (G.R. No. 196870, June 26, 2012)


WRIT OF KALIKASAN:

West Tower Condominium Corp. vs First Philippine Industrial Corp. (G.R.


No. 194239, May 31, 2011, and November 22, 2011)
Eliza M. Hernandez, et al. vs Placer Dome, Inc., et al. (G.R. No. 195482,
June 21, 2011)
Agham Party List vs LNL Archipelago Minerals, Inc. (G.R. No. 201918, June
13, 2012)

WRIT OF CONTINUING MANDAMUS: MMDA, et al. vs Concerned Residents of

Manila Bay (G.R. Nos. 171947-48, December 18, 2008)


PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE

Oposa vs Factoran, Jr. (G.R. No. 101083, July 30, 1993, 224 SCRA 792)
Tribal Coalition of Mindanao vs Taganito Mining Corp. (G.R. No. 196835,
June 28, 2011)
COVERAGE OF EXAMINATIONS:
MIDTERM: from Constitutional Provisions until Sustainable Development
FINALS: from Jurisdiction until the end.

-en