US Navy faces at least P58-M fine for reef damage
Rhodina Villanueva, Ding Cervantes (The Philippine Star) - April 6, 2013 - 1:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The US Navy will be fined at least P58 million for damaging 2,345.67 square meters of coral reefs in Tubbataha, according to a preliminary assessment conducted by the marine park authorities.

A follow-up assessment will be conducted next week on damage to the reef caused by the US Navy minesweeper USS Guardian when it ran aground in Tubbataha last January.

The Tubbataha Protected Area Management Board met yesterday to determine the extent of the coral reef damage and the fines the US Navy should pay based on the result of the preliminary assessment.

Experts from the Tubbataha Management Office, World Wide Fund for Nature, University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute, National Institute of Physics, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, and De La Salle University were part of the team that sailed to Tubbataha last Monday to ascertain coral reef damage and if restoration efforts are feasible.

The Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) said the team employed georeferencing – a system used to make satellite images for mapping target areas – in determining the area damaged by the USS Guardian.

“What the team did was just preliminary assessment. By next week, a final assessment of the affected area will be done. This will be more detailed,” said PAWB director Mundita Lim.  

 

ASSESSMENT BUREAU OF FISHERIES AND AQUATIC RESOURCES DE LA SALLE UNIVERSITY MUNDITA LIM NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS PROTECTED AREAS AND WILDLIFE BUREAU TUBBATAHA TUBBATAHA MANAGEMENT OFFICE TUBBATAHA PROTECTED AREA MANAGEMENT BOARD UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES MARINE SCIENCE INSTITUTE WORLD WIDE FUND
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