Environmental groups urge DENR to suspend Bataan coal power plant due to ash spill

admin   •   January 11, 2017   •   5075

Environmental groups urge the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to suspend the operation of a coal-fired power plant in Limay, Bataan.

Environmental groups urge the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to suspend the operation of a coal-fired power plant in Limay, Bataan.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is urged by environmental groups to release a directive that would suspend the operation of a coal-fired power plant owned by San Miguel Corporation and Petron in Limay, Bataan.

This, after reports that the said power plant has failed to protect the environment and has caused health hazards to residents living nearby.

READ: Residents bemoan ash spill from local power plant

“Dito kami nababahala na kapag patuloy itong nag operate (…) Kung ang suspension at desist order ay para lang sa dumping pero patuloy ang operation ng planta dito ay saan nila ida-dump ngayon ang 250 tons na coal ash,” said Philippine Movement for Climate Justice (PMCJ) national coordinator Ian Rivera.

(We really worry about this. If the power plant continues to operate and if the suspension and desist order against them is only for the dumping but its operation continues, where will they dump the 250 tons of coal ash?)

It can be recalled that DENR released a notice of violation and stoppage order against the dumping site. But the groups said the order is limited to coal ash pond and not included in the halt to the operation.

The PMCJ and Center for Energy, Ecology and Development argued that if the power plant in Limay, Bataan continues to produce ash, it would eventually affect the environment and the health of the residents.

WATCH: DENR investigates ash spill in Bataan

CEED national coordinator Gerry Arances stated that coal, no matter how you defend it, is still the dirtiest type of energy.

Aside from the suspension, the environmental group is also urging the DENR to audit first coal-fired power plants in line with the compliance certificates the agency is asking for.

The group also argued that the issue has to be investigated to determine the violations possibly being committed by the management of the power plant.

“Malinaw na meron, unang-una na d’yan hindi nagbigay ng pahintulot ang local government unit ng Limay na magtapon sila, mag-imbak ng ash. Ang ginawa nila ay nagtambak pa rin ng coal ash despite kawalan ng pahintulot, ng permiso mula sa LGU,” said Aaron Pedrosa, secretary general of Sanlakas

(There’s a clear violation. First is that the local government unit of Limay did not permitted them to throw or store ashes. What they did is that they store coal ash without permission from the LGU.) — Joshua Antonio | UNTV News & Rescue

Cimatu calls out Cebu officials’ ‘lack of coordination’ in reporting COVID-19 cases

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 29, 2020

There is a lack of coordination from the local officials of Cebu City which led to the discrepancy in reporting coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the area, according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu.

DENR Usec. Benny Antiporda said this is one of the issues Cimatu wants to resolve in Cebu City.

“You can see the situation in Cebu, walang coordination. Walang buong pagkilos mula sa barangay level to the local government units to the provincial government. Hindi buo (You can see the situation in Cebu, there is no coordination. No action from the barangay level to the local government units, up to the provincial government. It is not organized),” he said.

Cimatu will meet with officials from the barangay level to determine the problem in the COVID-19 response.

The Environment Secretary will submit a recommendation to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) regarding possible measures to ease the surge of COVID-19 cases.

President Rodrigo Duterte has directed Cimatu to fix the situation in Cebu City amid the surge of COVID-19 cases in the province.

Cimatu said all records should match in order to implement a better COVID-19 response. AAC (with reports from Vincent Arboleda)

DENR seizes P3.2-M worth of agarwood

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 23, 2020

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has seized 20 kilos or P3.2 million worth of agarwood in two separate operations.

DENR’s Environmental Protection and Enforcement Task Force (EPETF) and the NBI-Environmental Crime Division conducted operations in Pasig City and Cainta, Rizal last June 8.

Four suspects, identified as Ramil Ong, Bernie Bagay, Rizal Mofar, and Arjhun Gaviola, were arrested for the illegal transportation of the said high-value tree species.

“This clearly sends out the message that the government’s campaign against environmental offenders remains unrelenting despite a pandemic that is wreaking havoc worldwide,” Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said.

The four suspects were charged with violations of Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources and Protection Act. They are detained at the NBI detention facility in Manila.

Agarwood is one of the most expensive raw materials used in perfumery, costing at least P160,000 per kilo in the Philippines.

It is extracted from host trees locally known as Lapnisan and Lanete, which are both included in the national list of threatened Philippine plants. —AAC

Stranded whale rescued in Bagac, Bataan

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 19, 2020

A stranded pilot whale was rescued along the coastal waters of a private beach resort in Bagac, Bataan on Monday (June 15).

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) rescued the short-finned whale and immediately brought her to a nearby lagoon. Upon evaluation, the pilot whale was found to be weak and under stress. It is approximately three meters in length.

“The concerned veterinarian provided her with anti-stress antibiotics and took blood samples to further determine her health condition,” the PCG said in a post.

The PCG said they will continue to monitor the whale until full recovery before releasing it back into the ocean. AAC


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