Quantcast

Photo Essay Documents Plight of Communities Living Near Philippines’ Oldest Coal Plant

Energy

Coal is a highly polluting energy source. The use of coal brings with it a host of environmental, human health and social costs, which can be clearly seen through its impacts on mostly poor communities in and around coal-fired power plants.

Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

Photographer AC Dimatatac, visited Calaca, Batangas, to join a community consultation led by Bukluran Para sa Inang Kalikasan (BUKAL), with the residents of Barangay Quisumbing, to document the plight and struggle of communities living near the Philippines’ oldest coal plant—the Calaca power station a 600-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station owned by DMCI Holdings Incorporated of the Consunji Group in Calaca, the Philippines.

Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

The coal plant stands prominently behind the statue of a crucified Christ at a chapel near Barangay Quisumbing, Batangas. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Elders of the Barangay Quisumbing share their experiences about the coal power plant near their area. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

A child plays in front of a chapel that stands along the way to Barangay Quisumbing, Calaca, Batangas. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Children walking along the shores of Calaca Bay, where the 600 megawatt power plant stands since 1984 causing great damage to the environment and health of the residents for over thee decades. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Residents speak about how they bore witness to the construction and eventual 30-year operation of the coal plant that continues to this day. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Peti Enriquez, of Bukluran ng Inang Kalikasan (BUKAL), the main organization campaigning leading the anti-coal campaign in Calaca, gives a historical background of how the rule of eminent domain was used by the national government to take the coastal region of Calaca, in the late 1970s to build a power plant for the massive industrialization that was being implemented in the region at that time. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

Read page 1

The farmer and fisherfolk community of Barangay Quisumbing are calling for the government to stop investing in dirty coal and start using renewable energy. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Community leaders voice their resistance to the expansion of the coal plant. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

PJ Santos, of Kalikasan Peoples’ Network for the Environment, relates the community’s struggle to the national momentum of grassrooots resistance against fossil-fuel development. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

View of the phase 3 of calaca power plant near Barangay Puting Bato,Batangas. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

DMCI Power Corporation plans to expand the power station in three phases.Expansion Phase I, consisting of two 150-MW units, is under construction. Expansion Phase II, still under development, was initially planned as two additional 150-MW units; it was later changed to a single 350-MW unit, then to two single-unit 350-MW additional phases. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

What used to be a part of a rest house is now in ruins because of the effect of the coal power plant’s constant dredging of the shoreline to make room for the constant. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

Read page 1

(L-R) Constancia De Mesa (64), Norma Castillano, (59) and Magdalena Hernandez (66) they have been living in Calaca since birth and have lived with the effects of the coal power plant almost all their lives. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Constancia De Mesa: “We were among the first to oppose the project because it caused the immediate decline of our catch. We hope there is still a chance to close it because it causes great destruction to our community.” Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Norma Castillano: “Our appeal to the government is to put a stop to the coal plant’s dirty operation, it puts our future and the future of our children at risk.” Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

Magdalena Hernandez: “We’ve been resisting this project since the 1980s — even before it the plant started operating. When the coal plant started to operate it started to kill off the fish and the vegetation. Our community health center can attest to the growing trend of declining health and rise of cardiovascular diseases. The ash is everywhere including our farmlands and our sources for drinking water.” Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

 

The community vows to step up their campaign against the expansion of the coal plant. On May 14 they plan to confront DMCI Power Corporation. Photo credit: AC Dimatatac / Piglas Pilipinas!

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Major Milestone: More than 100,000 MW Worth of Coal-Fired Power Plants Retired

Bill McKibben: It’s Time to Turn Up the Heat on Those Who Are Wrecking Planet Earth

Leonardo DiCaprio Invests in Runa, Donates All His Shares to Ecuadorian Farmers

Largest Civil Disobedience in History of the Environmental Movement Begins Today

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A dead sea lion on the beach at Border Field State Park, near the international border wall between San Diego, California and Tijuana, Mexico. Sherry Smith / iStock / Getty Images

While Trump's border wall has yet to be completed, the threat it poses to pollinators is already felt, according to the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas, as reported by Transmission & Distribution World.

Read More Show Less
People crossing the Brooklyn Bridge on July 20, 2017 in New York City sought to shield themselves from the sun as the temperature reached 93 degrees. Drew Angerer / Getty Images

by Jordan Davidson

Taking action to stop the mercury from rising is a matter of life and death in the U.S., according to a new study published in the journal Science Advances.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Salmon fry before being released just outside San Francisco Bay. Jim Wilson / The New York Times / Redux

By Alisa Opar

For Chinook salmon, the urge to return home and spawn isn't just strong — it's imperative. And for the first time in more than 65 years, at least 23 fish that migrated as juveniles from California's San Joaquin River and into the Pacific Ocean have heeded that call and returned as adults during the annual spring run.

Read More Show Less
AnnaPustynnikova / iStock / Getty Images

By Kerri-Ann Jennings, MS, RD

Shiitake mushrooms are one of the most popular mushrooms worldwide.

Read More Show Less
Protesters hold a banner and a placard while blocking off the road during a protest against Air pollution in London. Ryan Ashcroft / SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty Images

By Jessica Corbett

Dozens of students, parents, teachers and professionals joined a Friday protest organized by Extinction Rebellion that temporarily stalled morning rush-hour traffic in London's southeasten borough of Lewisham to push politicians to more boldly address dangerous air pollution across the city.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored

Jose A. Bernat Bacete / Moment / Getty Images

By Bridget Shirvell

On a farm in upstate New York, a cheese brand is turning millions of pounds of food scraps into electricity needed to power its on-site businesses. Founded by eight families, each with their own dairy farms, Craigs Creamery doesn't just produce various types of cheddar, mozzarella, Swiss and Muenster cheeses, sold in chunks, slices, shreds and snack bars; they're also committed to becoming a zero-waste operation.

Read More Show Less
Coal ash has contaminated the Vermilion River in Illinois. Eco-Justice Collaborative / CC BY-SA 2.0

By Jessica A. Knoblauch

Summers in the Midwest are great for outdoor activities like growing your garden or cooling off in one of the area's many lakes and streams. But some waters aren't as clean as they should be.

That's in part because coal companies have long buried toxic waste known as coal ash near many of the Midwest's iconic waterways, including Lake Michigan. Though coal ash dumps can leak harmful chemicals like arsenic and cadmium into nearby waters, regulators have done little to address these toxic sites. As a result, the Midwest is now littered with coal ash dumps, with Illinois containing the most leaking sites in the country.

Read More Show Less

picture-alliance / AP Photo / NOAA Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center

The Group of 20 major economies agreed a deal to reduce marine pollution at a meeting of their environment ministers on Sunday in Karuizawa, Japan.

Read More Show Less