Piggery fined P150 thousand due to env’t lapses

Piggery fined P150 thousand due to env’t lapses

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) – May 10, 2019 – 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) in Central Visayas has ordered a piggery farm in Pinamungajan, Cebu to pay a fine of P150,000 for foul odor generation and alleged wastewater discharges into a river.

Excelsior Farms, Incorporated is given until May 21 to pay the fine. Located in Barangay Sacsac, it is a large-scale modern tunnel ventilated piggery farm designed to house a total hog population of 20,000 heads.

The bureau made the order following the conduct of a technical conference on May 6, 2019 attended by the farm management.

It stemmed from several complaints against the farm for allegedly discharging wastewater into Ulbujan River, resulting in water discoloration and pollution.

Residents have also complained about the foul odor emanating from the farm.

EMB-7 field personnel conducted investigation on April 12, 2019 to verify the alleged complaints and to conduct sampling to the nearby surface waters.

A follow-up investigation was also conducted on April 23, 2019 to survey the area outside the farm, to conduct wastewater sampling, and to check the farm’s odor mitigating measures.

On May 2, 2019, EMB 7 Field Personnel accompanied by EMB Regional Director William Cuñado conducted a final assessment on the pollution complaint.

The investigations found out that the piggery farm violated Republic Act 9275 or the Philippine Clean Water Act of 2004 and the Presidential Decree 1586 or the Philippine Environmental Impact Statement System.

Aside from paying the fine, the management signed a commitment order to solve or minimize the pollution problem in its area by removing the wastewater stored under the buildings which are causing a foul smell.

It said it will avail of daily hauling services for the removal of wastewater.

The management said the wastewater will also be treated using biodigester to eliminate the foul odor.

Moreover, it pledged to construct one unit of sand filter with a capacity of 180 cubic meters (m3) as start-up to remove sludge in the wastewater.

The management is required to submit a daily progress report to EMB-7.

Failure to comply will result to an additional penalty of P50,000 or issuance of a cease and desist order.

The piggery farm was issued with an Environmental Compliance Certificate by EMB-7 on May 5, 2015. It was also issued a valid discharge permit on January 9, 2019 with validity until January 9, 2020. — KBQ (FREEMAN)



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