Ahead of Earth Day celebration, local environmental advocates reiterate call vs reclamation projects in Cebu
CEBU CITY, Philippines — An environmental conservation organization in Cebu, the Save Cebu Movement, reiterated its call to halt reclamation projects in Cebu and revoke the clearances and permissions for those projects, which are expected to cover 3,041.65 hectares of the municipal waters in Cebu.
In a press conference on Friday, April 21, 2023, the Save Cebu Movement, maintained that a coalition of fisherfolk, civil society groups, academe, and scientific experts “vehemently” opposed the approval of the Cebu Provincial Board of the proposed 100-hectare reclamation in Minglanilla and the 254-hectare reclamation in Cordova, Mactan Island in March 2023.
“Instead of investing in environmentally destructive projects like reclamation, the government should invest in nature-based solutions, mobilize the full force of government’s mandate and resources to comprehensively prepare the people for the worsening climate impacts, address vulnerability and risks, prepare the climate mitigation and adaptation measures, and fully integrate this in the local development plans,” the group said in a statement.
The press conference, which was also live streamed on the official Facebook page of Save Cebu Movement and attended by representatives of Oceana, the PANGISDA group, the Philippine Earth Justice Center, SANLAKAS Cebu, and the University of the Philippines-Cebu, was held a day before the Earth’s Day celebration on Saturday, April 22.
Former Cebu City Councilor Alvin Dizon, who was one of the panelists during the press conference on Friday, emphasized that the legal and moral obligation of the government is to protect its people, by ensuring that the seas, the largest source of food and livelihood of fisher folks are protected.
He also enjoined the public and other environmental groups to work together to defend and save the ocean for the sake of everybody’s future survival.
To recall, the Cebu Provincial Board approved last March 2023, the 100-hectare reclamation project in the southern town of Minglanilla, called the Minglanilla Reclamation and Industrial Park, to be undertaken by the Ming-Mori Development Corp.
The project will have its own port facility and commercial, industrial and recreation centers.
Its proponents said the project is expected to generate over 75,000 jobs and will be considered the largest development project in southern Cebu.
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