Continued dumping of dolomite in Manila Bay criticized

Some groups have criticized the government’s continued dumping of crushed in parts of Manila Bay at the height of the COVID-19 cases in the country.

The Oceana Philippines group questioned why the said “ beach” was added even though the first mound in the area was damaged last year.

“Hindi mo mapigilan ‘yung ano ng waves kung may storm surges, no amount of infrastructure or rocks na nilagay nila ay hindi maanod,” said Oceana Vice President Gloria Ramos.

The Pamalakaya fishermen’s group said that people need a second dose of vaccine and not a second dose of dolomite.

It is also said to be outside the order of the Supreme Court for the rehabilitation of Manila Bay.

“Dapat i-rehabilitate ang Manila Bay, i-rehab, ibalik sa dating pangisdaan at ligtas na languyan. Wala pong sinabi ang Supreme Court na tambakan ng dolomite,” said Pamalakaya Chairman Fernando Hicap.

According to Environment Undersecretary Jonas Leones, funds have been allocated for the “ beach” project in 2019 so it cannot be stopped.

Continued dumping of in Manila Bay criticized

“Ito na ‘yong budget na in-allocate ng Congress, ito na ‘yung nai-award na sa contractors na gagawa, tapos puputulin natin eh magkakaroon tayo ng problema doon,” said Leones.

According to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the project is expected to be completed in June or July but it has not yet been immediately opened to the public to prevent influx, which could cause the spread of COVID-19.

On October 2020, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources remained firm on its stand that the dolomite white sand in Manila Bay was not washed out but was only covered by natural black sand.

Leones reiterated this after news surfaced that he allegedly said that “about 10 percent of the sand in Manila Bay has been swept to sea by the heavy rains.”

“There is no truth to the news reports that the dolomite sand has already been washed out to the sea,” he said in a statement.

The DENR official said that the dolomite sand is still intact and was only “washed” in by black sand.

Leones maintained that the washed-in dolomite “will not be washed out to the sea because of the geoengineering intervention we put on the project.”