El Nido, Palawan | UNTV Drone
PALAWAN ISLAND, Philippines – The local government of El Nido has issued on Friday (November 23) to stakeholders the guidelines that should be followed on the course of the rehabilitation works in the tourist areas.
The guidelines are to ensure that residential and business establishments are compliant with environmental laws.
The LGU has set stricter requirements for businessmen in order to renew their respective business permits in El Nido.
One of the primary requirements is for owners to secure first an environmental compliance certificate (ECC) from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
But before acquiring an ECC, business owners must have in their structures a proper waste disposal facility as well as three chambers for septic tanks. The ECC is now being required to all establishment owners, regardless of how many rooms they have in their structures.
Establishment owners must also secure a document proving that their structure is not covered by the three-meter easement zone.
These are the important documents that businessmen must submit along with the usual requirements such as the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) certificate; certificate of occupancy; building permit among others.
El Nido Mayor Nieves Rosento said they needed to impose stringent measures as directed by the national government specifically to ensure that all establishments abide by the Water Code and the Clean Air Act as well as the 3-meter Easement Zone Policy.
In addition to the paper requirements, the LGU also imposed new regulations when on the beachfront area.
Tables and chairs are no longer allowed at the beach front.
Likewise, tourists are no longer allowed to bring plastic bags or plastic bottles on boats going to tourist destinations.
Violators of the new regulations will be sanctioned accordingly while establishment owners will be banned from operating in El Nido.
On Friday (November 23), the LGU has begun limiting the number of visitors in small and big lagoons in the area.
Only 40 tourists are being allowed entry into the small lagoon and 20 kayaks for every 30 minutes.
In big lagoon, meanwhile, only 80 tourists are allowed and 40 kayaks for every 90 minutes.
Travel agencies with tour packages into the small and big lagoons must secure a permit first from DENR.
If the allowed capacity is already full, agencies may accept bookings for the next day. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Grace Casin)