Monday, July 16, 2018

Extend Boracay closure: “I don’t care if it will last two years. Do not open Boracay unless everything is finished,” Negros Oriental Rep. Teves

Negros Oriental Representative Arnolfo Teves and Boracay Island now in photo. Images credit to Google photos

If not all goals are met within six months, then the closure may extend for up to two years.

This was the sentiment of Negros Oriental Representative Arnolfo Teves over the Boracay closure after receiving information that  the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has yet to determine the island’s carrying capacity.

“Unless we know [the carrying capacity], we cannot move forward,” Teves said.

DENR admitted that it has yet to determine the carrying capacity of the island since they only have preliminary findings as of now.

DENR Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said academics are still studying the issue.

Teves furthered that besides the carrying capacity, DENR also needs to determine the number of rooms allowed per hotel and number of rooms allocated per establishment.

As for the sewage system in the beach destination, Boracay Water Chief Operating Officer Joseph Michael Santos said it would take “more than a year” to connect all establishments.

While 61% of the island has been connected to the sewer network, Santos said that they aim for full coverage by 2022.

Teves claims that the clean-up and rehabilitation effort for Boracay needs to be fully fulfilled before it opens.

“I don’t care if it will last two years. Do not open Boracay unless everything is finished,” he said.

In order to sustain the rehabilitation efforts, ANGKLA Representative Jess Manalo recommended to DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu to put an environmental and economic manager once Boracay is opened.

It has been two months since the top beach destination has been closed for rehabilitation efforts. It plans to open to the public by October 26 this year.

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Daily Pilipinas Source: Rappler

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