Pola, Oriental Mindoro
April 15, 2023

Following his aerial inspection over Oriental Mindoro, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. listened to the latest reports on the effects of the oil spill during a situation briefing in the Municipality of Pola.

Local officials from the Municipality of Pola, which is under a State of Calamity, and the Provincial Government of Oriental Mindoro shared developments on the current situation covering air, water and fishing quality in affected areas; scope of damage and impact in marine environment; and more importantly, concerns on additional needs of the residents including provisions for alternative livelihood, especially for the fisherfolks who have been greatly affected by the oil spill incident.

President Marcos Jr. directed all concerned government offices, particularly the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the Department of Agriculture (DA) – Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), to coordinate with nearby western coastal municipalities and come up with a formal agreement that will allow fisherfolks in affected areas to temporarily fish in their waters.

Other national government agencies continue to provide assistance to affected communities. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is undertaking measures to provide temporary work under its Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged Workers (TUPAD) Program and open sustainable livelihood not only for the fisherfolks, but for the fish sellers and tourism workers, among others.

On related reports, the Incident Management Team-Oriental Mindoro discussed the response operations conducted for the period of 28 February to 15 April 2023 or Day 47 since the oil spill transpired.

As of this date, the shoreline response has collected 5,124.5 sacks or approximately 121,100.00 kilograms of oil-contaminated materials, and 22 drums or about 2,750 kilograms of oil-contaminated sorbent materials and indigenous booms. Of this data, clean-up operations reflected 77.91% of acceptably cleaned shoreline, covering 31.64 kilometers of shoreline cleaned out of the 40.61 kilometers of total affected shoreline.

For offshore response, around 19,683 liters of oily water mixture and 220 sacks of oil-contaminated materials have been collected.

The Department of Health (DOH), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), BFAR and other concerned agencies are also continuously working to monitor and sample the safety of shore and drinking waters, and will provide further recommendations.

*  *  *