The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on Thursday formed a multipartite monitoring team (MMT) for Delta P Inc. (DPI), one of Palawan’s main independent power producers.
The MMT will act as an oversight body in monitoring the terms and conditions stipulated in the Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) of the project and other permit conditionalities of the 16-megawatt and 30-megawatt power plants of DPI all located in Barangay Sta. Lourdes.
The creation of the MMT is aimed at encouraging public participation to promote greater stakeholder vigilance and to provide appropriate check and balance mechanisms in the monitoring of project implementation as stipulated in DENR Administrative Order No. 30 Series of 2003 (DAO 2003-30)
The MMT is headed by the DENR through the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) regional office. Among the MMT members are DPI, Provincial Environmental Management Unit (EMB-PEMU), Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS), City Government of Puerto Princesa, Barangay Council of Sta. Lourdes, NGO represented by Palawan Conservation Corps, Department of Energy, and Academe represented by PSU.
EMB Regional Director Ma. Socorro Abu stressed during the signing of the memorandum of agreement Thursday that the creation of a MMT is required for environmentally critical projects like the power plant.
“I do hope that each member of the group will contribute to the betterment of our environment through the operation of Delta P,” Abu said.
She added that the main focus of the MMT in the monitoring of compliances of DPI are the five environmental laws, which are PD 1586 (ECC), RA 9275 (Comprehensive Water Quality Management), RA 8749 (Comprehensive Air Pollution Control Policy) RA 6969 (Hazardous Wastes), and RA 9003 (Solid Waste Management).
The agreement defines the amount allotted by the DPI for Environmental Guarantee Fund (EGF) which is P500 thousand.
The EGF will be used for the immediate rehabilitation and compensation of affected communities in case of damage or accidents and to cover the operational costs of the EGF Committee. It will also be used to compensate aggrieved parties for any damage to life or property, undertake community-based environmental programs, conducts environmental research aimed at strengthening measures to prevent environmental damage and to finance restoration and rehabilitation of environmental quality of the project affected area.
Abu, however, suggested an increase of EGF allotment up to P1 million to ensure that there will be enough funds for any emergency needs should any untoward accident happen.
A Manual of Operation that lays out the terms of reference of MMT in the conduct of monitoring activities will be developed within the next 90 days.
DPI power plant facilities are located on a 25,981-square meter parcel of land leased from the City Government of Puerto Princesa. It is jointly owned by Gigawatt Power, Inc. and Vivant Energy Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Vivant Corporation.