Ayala-owned company AC Energy Philippines files its rehabilitation plan to address the environmental impact of the oil spill caused by its power barge in the waters of Lapuz, Iloilo City last July 3, 2020.
In its environmental management plan, AC Energy stated that they will complete the oil spill cleanup to ensure that the water quality is restored to safe levels. Last July 5, AC Energy stated that clean up is estimated to be completed in 10 to 15 days. There are close to 200 volunteers who signed up to aid in the clean-up operations.
They will also continue to monitor air quality and ensure that the affected families are allowed to return to their homes only when it’s safe. There are about 323 families that were affected.
They will also continue to properly collect and dispose of all oil-contaminated materials and wastes, and rehabilitate the affected mangrove areas and fisheries.
AC Energy submitted this plan to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB). They also stated that they will also work closely with and get feedback and recommendations from DENR-EMB, various government agencies, the local governments of Iloilo City and Guimaras, and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) with regards to the rehabilitation plan.
PCG files criminal complaint for aquatic pollution
The PCG filed a criminal complaint against AC Energy last July 10, 2020 for alleged violation Section 107 of Republic Act 8550 (The Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998) as amended by RA 10654 for aquatic pollution.
AC Energy, in its statement released to Iloilo Updates as of this writing, stated that they have not received a copy of the complaint and thus they are unable to comment.
“Even with the filing of this case, however, the Company undertakes and commits to continue cooperating in good faith with the PCG and the other government units and agencies to ensure that the oil spill clean-up is done properly and completed soon and that the needs of the affected communities and groups are provided for,” AC Energy stated.
“With the submission of its EMP, and the various clean-up activities that it organized in coordination with industry and local government partners and the community assistance that it provided since the happening of the oil spill, the Company hopes to have demonstrated its serious commitment to do what is right for the affected communities and the environment, including to address the finding of aquatic pollution by the PCG,” it further stated.
On their statement posted on their Facebook page last July 4, AC Energy said that their Power Barge 102 had an unfortunate accident in its fuel tank which led to an oil spill. They immediately undertook containment procedures but high ocean waves in the afternoon caused some of the oil to spill out of their confinement area. The containment was completed through the use of multilayered spill booms from PB 102, and additional layers from the PCG and Petron. They also conducted skimming operations using the equipment of PB 102 and PCG.
For updates on the oil spill: AC Energy Facebook Page
Iloilo oil spill cleanup shows progress (July 17, 2020)
Oil spill-affected families in Iloilo return home (July 21, 2020)