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Ships with toxic substances to be banned from Misamis Occidental?

November 22, 2006

SEA vessels with toxic substances may soon be banned from territorial waters of Misamis Occidental after a barge carrying oil debris sank in waters off Plaridel town Monday night.

The barge Ras, which was contracted by oil giant Petron Corporation and the International Oil Pollution Commission, was bound for a factory owned by Holcim Cement in Lugait, Misamis Oriental and was carrying about 59,000 sacks of oily debris when it encountered strong waves and spilled about 600 tons debris into the sea.

Provincial governor Leo Ocampos told Magandang Umaga Pilipinas on Wednesday the provincial board will prepare an ordinance that will prohibit ships with toxic substances from entering provincial waters.

Gagawa kami ng ordinansya na yung municipal waters sa Misamis Occidental ay restricted for maritime navigation sa mga barko na may kargang toxic materials katulad ng mga debris,” [We will come up with an ordinance so that municipal waters of Misamis Occidental will be restricted for maritime navigation to ships carrying toxic materials like debris] Ocampos said.

Ocampos added that they will appeal to Petron to remove the toxins spilled into the sea.

On August 11, the MV Solar 1, another ship chartered by Petron, sank off waters in Guimaras affecting over 200 kilometers of coastline, including beaches and mangroves.

Ironically, the Ras was carrying oil debris from the Solar 1 when it sank. (ABS-CBN News, Nov. 22, 2006)

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