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Motor tanker behind oil spill in Mindoro found

by Carl Santos

The motor tanker Princess Empress, which sank and later caused an oil spill in Oriental Mindoro and nearby areas, has been found.

On Tuesday, the Philippine Coast Guard shared on Facebook photos of the motor tanker, which was located through a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) from Japan.

Various stakeholders, including the provincial government, ship owner, and the PCG, will meet to discuss future actions, the agency said.

“We will respond correspondingly once we have discussed yung result ng assessment na ginawa ng ROV. Mahalaga na ngayon ay nakikita na nila ang nasa ilalim,” said Oriental Mindoro Governor Humerlito Dolor.

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MT Princess Empress sank in the waters off Naujan, Oriental Mindoro, on February 28 while carrying 900,000 liters of industrial fuel due to strong waves.

It then caused an oil spill that has spread to other areas, including Verde Island, located along Verde Island Passage, which is known for its rich marine biodiversity.

Thousands of people have been affected by the oil spill, with the government rolling out cash-for-work programs to mitigate its impact.

The country’s oil spill response effort has also received assistance from Japan and the United States.

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