ORMOC CITY , Philippines – Mayor Richard Gomez has suspended the exportation of this city’s sand and gravel due to damage it caused on local rivers and the environment.
The city is a major source of Class A sand and gravel for the country’s construction sector. It exports an estimated 15,000 tons per week.
Gomez signed an executive order this week, suspending all new applications and renewal of sand and gravel quarry permits as well as transport of such outside the city.
He directed local officials to rehabilitate quarry sites with existing permits.
Gomez recently met with quarry operators and urged them to be responsible and comply with the law.
He said quarry sites found violating the order would be shutdown or their permits cancelled.
The order will take effect on Monday, according to Rafael Dumalan, city environment officer.
Dumalan said copies of the EO will be sent to sand and gravel quarry operators.
Earlier, Gomez prohibited quarry operations and its related activities during weekends and holidays to give residents of surrounding communities relief from noise and dusts brought by the grinding of boulders and stones.
Gomez explained that the Taal eruption is yet another illustration of the effects of fragmentation, saying that the lack of evacuation capacity — not to mention the quality of temporary accommodations — is one of the looming problems on disaster response.
“The proposed Department of Disaster Resilience (DDR) presents a department that carries the responsibility and mandate to lead, manage, direct and implement all programs pertaining to disaster resilience, from risk reduction to response, relief, recovery and rehabilitation,” said Gomez.
“The DDR will absorb key disaster risk management functions from the DND and DSWD, namely the disaster risk management functions of the Office of Civil Defense, Disaster Response Assistance and Management Bureau and the National Resource and Logistics Management Bureau,” she added.
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