Probe ordered on road construction inside Aurora National Park

Published February 14, 2018, 10:00 PM

by Mario Casayuran and Vanne Elaine Terrazola

By Ariel Avendaño

Maria Aurora, Aurora – The Aurora Memorial National Park (AMNP) has been ordered to conduct an investigation into allegations that a construction firm was undertaking road concreting along a stretch of the Baler-Bongabon national road, which lies at the foot of the Sierra Madre mountain.

Lawyer Ricardo G. Lazaro Jr., Aurora province head of the Department Of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) issued the order “to scrutinize the activities of Roncal Construction and file necessary criminal charges if found to have violated the DENR laws and policies to protect the environmentally critical AMNP.”

Initial reports supported with photographs taken by The Manila Bulletin showed that indiscriminate earth-dumping in streams and waterways purportedly committed by the firm which could be a clear violation of the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS)law,and its Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC).

AMNP has been declared a critically protected area.

Illegal earth-moving will result to the silting and destruction of streams and rivers triggered by indiscriminate dumping of tons of soil outside the officially designated areas, Lazaro pointed out.

Lazaro also ordered Ortiz to impose penalties against the construction company once the violations have been verified, and collect dues on all vehicles and equipment utilized by the firm during the entire duration of the road construction.