A squatter shanty at Parang beach, one of the culprits that make the shoreline dirty. –
MWBuzz by ARNEL P HERNANDEZ
By ALFREDO P HERNANDEZ
MAMBULAO Mayor Dong Padilla will soon deal with the worsening waste pollution that plagues the beach of Parang, a sitio next to the poblacion.
This was disclosed by a source close to the mayor’s office.
The source said Padilla is “taking note of all the suggestions” on how to rehabilitate the beach, which has been inundated by rubbish dumped by shanties squatting along the shore and households nearby.
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Padilla is considering a regular collection of rubbish along the beach, at least “three to four times a week” and putting marshals to check on those dumping wastes onto the beach.
If available funds would allow, a regular “cleaner” or somebody who would rake the beach sand up on a regular basis would be hired, according to the source.
The source has also revealed that a number of citizens have signified intent to work as volunteers in the “beach clean-up exercise”, which is now being coordinated with the local government unit.
Councilor Bebot de Guzman has been requested to enlist the Parents-Teacher Association (PTA) of Jose Panganiban National High School as well as that of the Parang Elementary School in the beach clean-up project.
A concerned citizen, Aldrin Toribio who heads the Unland Panganiban Movement (UPM), told MWBuzz he has sent letters to some known politicians in the province seeking assistance in the construction of some three to four public toilets along the 1.5km stretch of beach for use of squatter families in the area.
The worsening waste pollution of Parang beach has become one of the major environmental issues bugging the municipal government.
Padilla’s government is facing funding constraint to effectively deal with pollution issues in the community.
Padilla’s government is also trying to deal with equally-troubling situation of the Mambulao Bay which, over the past few years, has become polluted with gold mine tailings and mud wastes from gold panning operations.
The only operating medium-sized gold miner – Johson Gold Mining Corp – has reportedly ceased operations pending the issuance of an environmental compliance certificate (ECC) from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
Such issuance, according to Padilla, could take sometimes, as Johson has yet to get a renewal of its mining claims certificate from DENR, a pre-requisite before the municipal government could endorse its application for an ECC.
At the same time, Johson would not be able to get such endorsement until the miner has improved its tailings ponds at its mine camp at San Mauricio mountain to contain its cyanide-laden mining wastes.
Padilla, in recent communication with MWBuzz, had indicated that his government does not feel confident as yet on the “integrity” or adequacy of Johson’s tailing ponds in containing its toxic mine wastes.
The mayor expressed concern that an inadequate mine tailings containment pond could break and spill the cyanide-laden wastes into nearby tributaries and creeks that end up at the Mambulao Bay.