File photo courtesy of the municipal government of Coron Facebook page.

Four sustainable tourism projects for Coron have been approved by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), including a centralized sewage treatment plant (STP) worth P594 million that will remove contaminants from municipal wastewater.

The approved project are streetlight improvements, three floating docks, and a hyperbaric chamber to treat decompression sickness, which is a hazard of scuba diving.

House Rep. Franz “Chicoy” Alvarez told Palawan News on Saturday that the STP is a matter of caring for the health of the environment of Coron.

The treatment of municipal wastewater before it is disposed of is critical to the habitat of various species of fish and other aquatic life. He said it is also to secure the health of coastal residents who are often exposed to diseases that might be carried by untreated used water.

Alvarez said he sought Tourism Sec. Bernadette Romulo-Puyat’s help for the budget requirement of the STP.

“Inilapit ko ito kay Sec. Bernadette Romulo-Puyat ng Department of Tourism (DOT) at nakakuha tayo ng P594 million. Ang fund na ito ay from TIEZA and will be downloaded to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) next year,” Alvarez said.

“Ang makikinabang dito ay buong Coron. Ayaw natin kasi na matulad ito sa Boracay, kaya sinikap natin na magkaroon ng sewage treatment plan doon,” he added.

Taking to social media also Saturday, Coron mayor Mario Reyes thanked TIEZA for the projects that “will not only help boost tourism” in their town “but will also help in spearheading the campaign for it to become sustainable”.

“I am positive that we are moving forward towards what we have all envisioned for our beloved town — a better Coron and a brighter tomorrow,” Reyes said.

Reyes said the projects are through the cooperation and support of Alvarez, DOT, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), DPWH, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the municipal council headed by vice mayor Asian Palanca, and the people of Coron.

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