Philippines villagers fight Mitsubishi

November 2, 1994

Philippines villagers fight Mitsubishi

Residents of Masinloc on the Philippines island of Luzon are fighting a gigantic power plant that could force them off their land, cut thousands of century-old mango trees, pollute rivers and endanger one of the Philippines' best-preserved coral reefs. PEAN, the Philippines Environmental Action Network, has issued an urgent appeal for support to stop construction of the 700- megawatt, coal-fired thermal plant.

Mitsubishi Corporation has won the bid to build the plant for US$525 million, funded in part by the Asian Development Bank (US$200 million) and the Export-Import Bank of Japan (US$150 million). Neighbourhood leaders have been fighting for four years to stop the project.

Activists fighting the plant claim that Mitsubishi is not planning to install the desulphurisation unit, an expensive but important pollution-reducing device. The opponents further claim that project director Napacor, the National Power Corporation, has failed to meet the conditions set forth in the original environmental compliance certificate.

The controversy has reached a critical stage because the funding banks have required 100% land acquisition as a condition of the loan.

Max de Mesa, Secretary General of PEAN, contacted Rainforest Action Network seeking support of efforts to halt this development by Mitsubishi Corporation.

PEAN is calling upon groups internationally to write letters to the heads of these two banks asking them to halt funding for this project:
President Mitsuo, Sato Asian Development Bank, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines; and
President Kenji Tanaka, Export-Import Bank of Japan, 14th Floor, Pacific Star Bldg., Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue, cor. Makati Avenue, Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines.

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