What is black sand/magnetite mining?
It is the process of getting magnetite from area having rich deposits such as sea shores. Magnetite is highly magnetic, apparently the most magnetic natural mineral on Earth. Done by excavating the soil and separated by means of strong magnetic block. Magnetite is used as magnetic storage (e.g. disk drive, floppy drive and music tapes), sorbent, ferrofluids, industrial coatings and as catalysts.
What is the effect of black sand mining if done in coastal areas?
Black sand mining literally means scraping off the shoreline. It create more area for salt water while narrowing the land. It disturbs the natural balance. Driving away any living organisms in area, prevents land farming and it may wipe out a whole shoreline community.
Residents in several towns of Ilocos Sur, like San Vicente and Santa Catalina, are planning to file a petition for writ of kalikasan to stop black sand mining in their area. They are afraid that continuous activity might erase some coastline communities.