On February 15, the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS) District Management Division (DMD)-North attended the El Nido Rehabilitation Task Force’s action planning and delegation of tasks for the proposed rehabilitation initiatives for the municipality of El Nido, held at the El Nido Mayor’s Office Conference Hall.
Guided by the Executive Order No. 23-017 entitled “Creation of Task Force Committees for Waste Water Parameters of the Municipality of El Nido and Providing Appropriation thereof” issued by the El Nido Mayor Edna Gacot-Lim, the meeting served as an avenue for the delegation of El Nido Rehabilitation committees to oversee the El Nido’s rehabilitation plans handling water quality monitoring; establishment compliance; monitoring and enforcement; and planning.
The meeting also served as an avenue for the introduction and discussion of El Nido rehabilitation action plans, which include: Strict Monitoring of Establishment and environmental Quality, Intensify Policy Implementation and Compliance, Installation/construction of related facilities, and aggressive education and awareness campaign.
Based on the water sampling study by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in 2022, the concentration of fecal coliform in the El Nido’s waters is high, corroborated by the PCSDS-ECAN Monitoring and Evaluation Division (EMED)’s study since 2007 yielding the same results.
In the middle of 2022, a recorded diarrhea outbreak was recorded in the said municipality, raising the alarm on the severity of the water quality situation.
Covering the Barangays of Corong-corong, Maligaya, Masagana, and Buena Suarte, an Information, Education, and Information (IEC) campaign is now about to commence this month. In June, some infrastructure projects on El Nido rehabilitation initiatives are projected to roll out.
A P10-M budget is now being deliberated by the Municipal Planning and Development Office (MPDO) of El Nido, which will be sourced from the funds of Eco-Tourism Development Fee (ETDF) generated from the tourism bounties of the municipality, to fund the aforementioned El Nido rehabilitation initiatives.
The El Nido Rehabilitation Task Force is composed of PCSDS, together with representatives from Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office; Municipal Sanitation Office; Municipal Tourism; El Nido-Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area Office; Provincial Government of Palawan-STP; Municipal Agriculture Office; El Nido Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Bureau of Fire.
The creation of the El Nido Rehabilitation Task Force also came on the heels of the consultative meeting held last February 8, where the MIMAROPA Regional Committee on Tourism had a meeting with Palawan Governor Victorino Dennis Socrates and officials from the Provincial Government of Palawan and the Municipal Government of El Nido to address the municipality’s pressing water quality challenges.
It was also attended by Department of Tourism (DOT) Regional Director Azucena Pallugna; Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) MIMAROPA Assistant Regional Director Donna Mayor-Gordove; DOH representative Dr. Rommel Lizan; DENR-Environmental Management Bureau (EMB)-MIMAROPA representatives Engr. Pablito Estorque and Ms. Kathryn Tupasi; Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA); and other concerned agencies.
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