DENR ordered closure of Chocolate Hills pool resort back in September 2023

DENR ordered closure of Chocolate Hills pool resort back in September 2023
Screenshots from Ren The Adventurer's video

THE Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said on Wednesday, March 13, 2024, that it issued in September 2023 a temporary closure order against a pool resort built in the middle of the infamous Chocolate Hills in Bohol.

In a statement, the DENR said it also issued a notice of violation to the project proponent of the viral Captain’s Peak Resort last January for operating without an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC).

“As of March 13, 2024, the Regional Executive Director Paquito D. Melicor issued a memorandum directing Penro Bohol Ariel Rica to create a team to conduct inspection at Captain's Peak for its compliance with the Temporary Closure Order,” the agency said.

The DENR maintained that the Chocolate Hills is a protected area as declared on July 1, 1997 through Proclamation 1037 issued by then President Fidel V. Ramos that aims to preserve its iconic landscape and promote sustainable tourism while protecting the biodiversity and environmental integrity of the area.

It said it was also designated as a National Geological Monument and a protected landscape, recognizing the unique geological formations and the importance of covering this natural wonder for future generations.

“If a land was titled prior to Proclamation 1037 declaring an area as protected area, the rights and interests of the landowner will generally be recognized and respected,” the DENR said.

“However, the declaration of the area as a protected area may impose certain restrictions or regulations on land use and development within the protected area, even for privately-owned lands. These restrictions and regulations are to be detailed in the Environmental Impact Statement prior to the issuance of an Environmental Compliance Certificate for the project,” it added. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)


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