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You are here: Home / Media / Archive / 2007 / Court orders shut down shell oil depot

Court orders shut down shell oil depot

March 7th 2007 -– Friends of the Earth International welcomed today’s ruling of the Philippines Supreme Court, which ordered the Manila City government to shut down the Pandacan oil depot.
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MEDIA ADVISORY
7 March 2007

Friends of the Earth International

SHUT DOWN SHELL OIL DEPOT, PHILIPPINES SUPREME COURT ORDERS

Manila (Philippines) / Brussels (Belgium) / Amsterdam (The Netherlands), March 7th 2007 -– Friends of the Earth International welcomed today’s ruling of the Philippines Supreme Court, which ordered the Manila City government to shut down the Pandacan oil depot.

The Supreme Court stated that it is the duty of the City Mayor to “enforce all laws and ordinances”. The Mayor therefore has to implement Ordinance 8027 of November 28 2001 about the closure of the depot.

Friends of the Earth International, together with local partners Fenceline Community for Human Safety and Environmental Protection and United Front to Oust Oil Depots, have been working for several years to force Pandacan oil depot operators, including Shell, to implement proper environmental standards.

“Today’s ruling of the Supreme Court makes it clear that Shell will have to start the process of shutting down the depot immediately. Already in 2001 the City Council of Manila decided that the oil depot needed to be closed. The City Mayor and Shell have not respected that decision,” said Paul de Clerck, corporate campaigner at Friends of the Earth International.

“This is a landmark case in the Philippines as far as environmental justice is concerned. The Pandacan oil depot services 80% of the petrol requirements of the Philippines. In the decision, the Supreme Court has upheld the general welfare of the people over the private and pecuniary interest of the oil companies. The Court has placed paramount importance on the health and safety of the people. This is a welcome precedent to Philippine environmental justice” said Vladimir Cabigao, lawyer for the Fenceline Community for Human Safety and Environmental Protection and one of the proponents of the case filed to the Supreme Court.

The Pandacan oil depot is owned by Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation, Caltex (Philippines) Inc. and Petron Corporation. It is located in a densely populated neighborhood of Manila, posing enormous health and safety concerns to local inhabitants and the environment. Odors and fumes emanating from the oil depot are continual source of complaints from local residents who are exposed to carcinogens and harmful toxins.

NOTES TO EDITORS:

In June 2006 a complaint was filed in the Netherlands that Shell Pilipinas violated the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Corporations. That case is still pending.

Today's decision of the Supreme Court can be found at: http://www.supremecourt.gov.ph/jurisprudence/2007/march2007/156052.htm

Detailed information on the Pandacan Oil Depot can be found at page 37-40 of the report “Use your profit to clean up your mess”: http://www.milieudefensie.nl/globalisering/publicaties/rapporten/shellrapport

FOR MORE INFORMATION

In Belgium:

Paul de Clerck, Friends of the Earth International corporate campaigner: paul@milieudefensie.nl, +32-494380959 and +32-2-5426106

In the Philippines:

Vladimir Cabigao, Fenceline Community for Human Safety and Environmental Protection: vladalartcab@yahoo.com, +63-9178338107

 

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