Tañon Strait

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The southern part of Tañon Strait with Sibulan, Negros Oriental in the background

Tañon Strait (Filipino:Kipot ng Tanon) lies between the islands of Negros and Cebu in the Philippines. The strait, which is about 161 km (100 miles) long, connects the Visayan Sea in the north to the Bohol Sea in the south. Its width varies from 5 to 27 kilometres (3 to 17 mi), with the narrowest point in the south.[1] In the north the strait is closed off by the Don Islands, the largest of which is Bantayan. The cities of Bais, Negros Oriental and Toledo, Cebu have deepwater port facilities. The Tañon Strait is known for whale‑ and dolphin‑watching, with tour boats operating from Bais City.

Protected area[edit]

Protected seascape

The Tañon Strait protected seascape was established by President Ramos under proclamation no. 1234 of 1998.[2]

Controversy[edit]

On February 7, 2008 the Supreme Court of the Philippines ordered the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Energy to comment on a certiorari petition filed for baleen and toothed whales, dolphins, porpoises including the Irrawaddy Dolphins, and other cetacean species in the Tañon Strait to stop oil exploration by Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. Ltd. (JAPEX) in the protected waterway. The strait serves as a marine wildlife reserve that provides grounds for breeding, feeding and resting to 11 species of marine mammals. The court was asked to recognize the petitioners as "Filipino mammals" with constitutional rights.[3][4]

JAPEX subsequently abandoned oil exploration in the area, saying that initial drilling had shown lack of commercial opportunity. However the Supreme Court case continued.[5][6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Tanon-Strait at Encyclopædia Britannica
  2. ^ Presidential Proclamation No. 1234 s. 1998 of 27 May 1998 DECLARING THE TAÑON STRAIT SITUATED IN THE PROVINCES OF CEBU, NEGROS OCCIDENTAL AND NEGROS ORIENTAL AS A PROTECTED AREA PURSUANT TO RA 7586 (NIPAS ACT OF 1992) AND SHALL BE KNOWN AS TAÑON STRAIT PROTECTED SEASCAPE. Retrieved 16 November 2014.
  3. ^ "Dolphins v. Secretary Reyes, et al, SC-G.R. No. 180771". Environment – Dolphins went to the Supreme Court. 2012. Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  4. ^ "SC asked to intervene on behalf of Tañon Strait sea animals". The Inquirer. 9 February 2008. 
  5. ^ Gallo, Nilda; Bongcac, Doris C. (17 May 2008). "Tañon Strait court battle goes on". Inquirer Global Nation (Cebu Daily News). Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  6. ^ "G.R. No. 180771". Republic of the Philippines, Supreme Court, Manila. RESIDENT MARINE MAMMALS OF THE PROTECTED SEASCAPE TAÑON STRAIT, E.G., TOOTHED WHALES, DOLPHINS, PORPOISES, AND OTHER CETACEAN SPECIES, JOINED IN AND REPRESENTED HEREIN BY HUMAN BEINGS GLORIA ESTENZO RAMOS, ET AL. VS. SECRETARY ANGELO REYES, ET AL. G.R. NO. 181527 - CENTRAL VISAYAS FISHERFOLK DEVELOPMENT CENTER (FIDEC), ET AL. VS. SECRETARY ANGELO REYES, ET AL. 24 April 2012. Retrieved 25 November 2014. 

Coordinates: 10°12′N 123°24′E / 10.200°N 123.400°E / 10.200; 123.400