Environmentalists Oppose P14-B Reclamation Plan

Article excerpt

MANILA, Philippines --- Environmental activists have joined forces with thousands of residents in Las Pinas in appealing to the government to drop permanently the implementation for a P14-billion reclamation project on a 635.14 hectare portion of the Manila Bay.

Led by former Las Pinas Rep. Cynthia Villar, oppositors of the project appeared in a House of Representatives inquiry into the serious environmental issue that is also the subject of a petition for writ of kalikasan granted by the Supreme Court on April.

During the hearing conducted by the Committee on Natural Resources, Villar assailed proponents of the project for their failure to consult people to be adversely affected by the massive flooding and other serious environmental concerns.

She called on the Lower House to immediately pursue legislative measures that would stop similar development projects that would result in serious environmental destruction in the long run.

Earlier, Villar won a SC ruling that granted her petition for writ of kalikasan against the reclamation project.

The hearings about Villar's petition are still ongoing at the Court of Appeals (CA) where she took the court stand on October 12.

Oppositors warned that the proposed Manila Bay reclamation project is expected to severely damage the 175-hectare mangrove forest and marine habitat at the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area (LPPCHEA).

They also noted that the project will impede on the natural river flow in Las Pinas, thus, threaten huge areas of the city and neighboring localities with flooding. …