MANILA, Philippines – The Japanese government is sending oil control experts from its coast guard to aid in Philippine efforts to respond to the oil spill in Oriental Mindoro.
Japanese Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa made the announcement on Wednesday, March 8, saying that experts arriving include those who specialize in oil removal and control.
“We are one with you in these trying times,” Koshikawa said.
Coastal communities are among those hardest hit by a February 28 oil spill, where a tanker carrying 800,000 liters of industrial oil capsized off the coast of Naujan.
Philippine authorities have since been racing to contain the damage that has so far affected 76 barangays in nine towns.
The oil spill has put at risk more than 30 of Oriental Mindoro’s marine-protected areas, and also threatens other provinces, such as Antique in Western Visayas.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources raised concerns over the potential effects on protected areas, including the Verde Island Passage, a center of marine biodiversity.
Residents also face health risks from exposure to the oil spill.
On Wednesday, Koshikawa said members of Japan’s disaster relief expert team were already en route to the Philippines.
The oil spill in Oriental Mindoro is the seventh in the Philippines since 1999. – Rappler.com
There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.