THE Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has imposed a P11.8 million fine on Pepsi Cola Products Philippines, Inc. (PCPPI) for operating deep well pumps AT its Muntinlupa plant without permits.
In an order dated Tuesday, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB), a DENR agency, said it raised the penalty from P11.58 million initially.
The deep wells were discovered after a DENR task force and the Philippine National Police raided PCPPI’s plant last week.
The raid led to a partial closure of the facility’s operations.
NWRB Litigation and Adjudication head Archie Edsel C. Asuncion in a statement on Wednesday said that the increase in the fine stems from a P1,000 per day charge associated with the deep wells’ operations, which ran from Jan. 10, 2013 to June 11.
Undersecretary for Solid Waste Management and Local Government Unit Concerns Benny D. Antiporda in the same statement said the six deep well pumps were sealed to prevent further depletion of the groundwater.
“The sealing was done after the raiding team disconnected the riser and submersible pumps of the deep wells from the power supply and computer box,” he added.
Sought for comment, PCPPI told BusinessWorld that it cannot disclose further details of its ongoing case with NWRB.
“We are still in discussion with the Board and working on finding a speedy resolution on this issue,” the company said. — Anna Gabriela A. Mogato