DENR to release exact carrying capacity of Boracay Island
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will soon release the exact carrying capacity of Boracay Island prior to the partial opening of the world famous island destination on October 15.
Without giving exact numbers, Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu said a study carried out by a multidisciplinary team of researchers from the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau and the University of the Philippines at Los Baños showed that the carrying capacity of the island had been breached.
Cimatu said although the study has been completed, the figures are still being finalized.
While he declined to provide a base figure, he said Boracay entertains more than 6,000 tourists on a daily basis, which is way more than what the island could actually accommodate.
This, according to him, has lead to the generation of too much waste and the deterioration of water quality, among others.
“Also, with the existing number of hotel rooms and establishments, it was indicated in the study that there is an exceedance in the number of rooms vis-à-vis the island’s carrying capacity,” Cimatu said, adding that right now, there are more than 5,000 hotel rooms.
Once out, Cimatu said the results of the study will be used by the Boracay Inter-agency Task Force in formulating policies that will ensure that the rehabilitation efforts of the island can be sustained.
To recall, the task force is planning to hold a dry run for the opening starting on October 15 up to October 25, 2018.
This will be open to local tourists, with Aklanons as priority, and allow us to assess what else needs to be done before the island is reopened to all tourists – both domestic and foreign – on October 26.