DILG recommends 3-month closure of parts of El Nido
(Philstar.com) – July 26, 2019 – 2:21pm
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government recommended the three-month closure of some parts of El Nido town in Palawan for rehabilitation.
The closure, if approved by the environment and tourism departments, will cover Brgy. Corong-Corong and barangays along Bacuit Bay.
This means no water activities in these parts of El Nido “to preserve the area and prevent the tourists and locals from contracting diseases.
DILG said the waters at Bacuit Bay and Corong-Corong Outfall have high fecal coliform levels.
“It was found that Bacuit Bay and Corong-Corong Outfall are in a dreadful condition with one outfall’s fecal coliform level reaching more than 3.4 most probable number or 100 milliliters. This is compounded by the presence of informal settler families, non-enforcement of easement regulations on outfalls and regulated dry-docking and mooring activities,” DILG said.
DILG Undersecretary Epimaco Densing, however, clarified that 20 island destinations in El Nido will not be shut down since they have passed water quality tests.
The closure of some areas in El Nido is the latest in the government’s clean-up efforts after the six-month shutdown of Boracay in 2018 and the rehabilitation of Manila Bay this year.
Palawan recently made it to Lonely Planet’s list of best places to visit in Asia-Pacific, where El Nido was specifically mentioned.
“The crown jewel is El Nido, where skyscraping karst formations rise out of blue water in Bacuit Bay,” Lonely Planet said. — Gaea Katreena Cabico with report from News5/Shyla Francisco
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