CEBU HALTS ‘WHITE SAND’ MINING FOR MANILA BAY
Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia ordered a stop to mining operations in Alcoy town for the dolomite or powder-white sand used for the Manila Bay beach’s P389-million beautification project.
This is after the project has drawn criticism from environmentalists and lawmakers alike.
This developed as Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu defended to Congress the use of crushed dolomite rocks to whiten the Manila Bay shoreline—even as Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said the project could be stopped if proven that dolomite dust is harmful to the public.
Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” Domagoso on Tuesday also sought clarification from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on the possible health risks of crushed dolomite rocks, following a statement from Health Undersecretary Rosario Vergeire that inhalation of dolomite particles could cause respiratory problems.
However, Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said the DENR would continue its effort of adorning the Manila Bay shoreline with white sand, even amid a potential legal challenge before the Supreme Court.