DENR to issue violation notice vs shipowner for wastewater discharge in Manila Bay

Gaea Katreena Cabico - Philstar.com
DENR to issue violation notice vs shipowner for wastewater discharge in Manila Bay
Sandbags were placed along the artificial white sand beach along Manila Bay amid the ongoing rehabilitation of the natural harbor by the DENR in this undated photo.
The STAR / Edd Gumban

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources said it will issue a notice of violation against the owner of a ship identified as the source of the untreated wastewater that was discharged in Manila Bay over the weekend.

In a release Thursday, Jonas Leones, DENR undersecretary for policy, planning and international affairs, said the wastewater dumped by MV Sarangani was above the standard of the department.

According to the report of the agency’s Environmental Management Bureau, samples taken from the discharge area showed an effluent fecal coliform count of 1,700 most probable number per 100 milliliters (MPN/100 ml), which is higher than the standard effluence fecal coliform of 200 MPN/100 ml.

The ambient fecal coliform reached 2,400 MPN/100 ml, exceeding the standard 100 MPN/100 ml. The presence of fecal coliform bacteria in marine environments indicates that the water has been contaminated with the fecal material of man or other animals, according to the Water Research Center

Meanwhile, the oil and grease discharge was at 19 milligrams per liter (mg/l), surpassing the required 5 mg/l.

Possible charges

Leones said a technical conference will be conducted to hear the side of the owner of MV Sarangani. Then, the EMB and the Philippine Coast Guard are expected to file a case against the owner of the vessel before the Manila Bay Task Force.

“After we have completed the process, the MBTF will convene and they will be adjudicating the violations of the shipowner, and hopefully they will be coming up with the appropriate sanctions, penalties, and imposition of fines against the shipowner,” he said.

The owner of the vessel could face charges for allegedly violating the Clean Water Act of 2004, the Marine Pollution Decree of 1976, Fisheries Code of 1998, and other regulations of the PPA.

The shipowner, if held liable, will pay a daily fine ranging between P10,000 and P200,000 from the start of the discharge until such time that it has cleaned up the affected area.

DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu said the owner will also need to rehabilitate the vessel to avoid the destruction of marine ecosystem.  

To prevent similar incidents, the agency will implement a 2.5-kilometer no-entry zone for vessels, except for those delivering dolomite for the ongoing beach nourishment project, which is part of the ambitious rehabilitation plan for Manila Bay.

vuukle comment



  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with