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Group slams PPA for allowing hazardous coal at port facility

/ 12:19 PM February 19, 2016
SECURITY guards block the Manila Harbour Centre gate. NIÑO JESUS ORBETA

SECURITY guards block the Manila Harbour Centre gate. NIÑO JESUS ORBETA

A cause-oriented group has slammed the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) for allowing the storage of 40,000 metric tons of hazardous coal stockpile inside the facility of the Harbour Centre Port Terminal Inc. in Tondo, Manila without proper environmental safety measures.

The Filipino Alliance for Transparency and Empowerment (Fate) said PPA should immediately investigate the tons of coal stockpiles stored at the port facility owned by businessman Reghis Romero.

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“Coal is very dangerous to human health as it emits toxic and dangerous gases, and carcinogens,” said Fate president Jennifer Castro.

She said the PPA, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Manila City government should immediately cancel all environment permits and other licenses of HCPTI for storing dangerous coal.

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Castro added that coal pollutes the environment and HCPTI’s coal facility is near residential areas.

“The health of the public and the environment are at stake here. The government and its agencies should not tolerate companies that cause pollution,” she said.

Residents of Vitas, Tondo, the area near the HCPTI facility, have complained about the effects of the hazardous coal stockpiles on their health.

They said because of the polluted environment, they suffer from various ailments including cough, diarrhea, and fever.

The polluted environment in the area has resulted in the death of a child, according to one resident.

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TAGS: fate, Filipino Alliance for Transparency and Empowerment, Harbour Centre Port Terminal Inc., Tondo
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