The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) today awarded 15 companies which have shown exemplary environmental performance with the Seal of Approval under the agency’s Philippine Environment Partnership Program (PEPP). This brings to a total of 39 the number of companies recognized for their environmental performance since 2009.

DENR Secretary Ramon Paje, who led the awarding ceremonies at the DENR Social Hall in Quezon City, said that PEPP is a program that supports the aspiration of industries toward self-regulation.

He also said that the program aims to promote corporate social responsibility (CSR) among local industries, particularly those that consider environmental protection an important part of sound governance.

“With the PEPP, we wish to recognize and show our appreciation for companies that give premium to environmental protection as an integral business concern. Somehow they realize that to thrive in the global economy, they need to respond as well to environmental challenges,” he said.

The companies bestowed with the award, under “Track 1” category, for “going beyond simple compliance, and being driven by competitiveness, image and supply chain requirements to improve their performance” are the following:

Aboitiz Power – Hedcor, Inc. (Beckel, Benguet); PSI Technologies, Inc. (Taguig); Holcim Philippines – Bacnotan Plan (La Union); STMicroelectronic, inc. ( Calamba City , Laguna); KEP CO Ilijan Corporation Philippines (Ilijan, Batangas); Aboitiz Power Renewables, Inc. – Mak-Ban Geothermal Plant (Bay, Laguna); Aboitiz Power Renewables, Inc. – Tiwi Geothermal Plant (Tiwi, Albay); Energy Development Corporation (Kanangga, Leyte); Green Core Geothermal Inc. (Ormoc, Leyte); Philippine Associated Smelting and Refining Corporation (Isabel, Leyte); Nestle Philippines, Inc. – CDO Factory (Tablon, Cagayan de Oro City); Holcim Philippines – Davao Plant (Ilang, Davao City); Alliance Select Foods International (Tambler, General Santos City); Southern Philippines Power (Alabel, Saranggani Province); and Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines, Inc. – General Santos Plant (Bula, General Santos City).

Likewise, Absolut Distillers, Inc. was awarded a Special Citation for Environmental Excellence, for winning the Green Apple Award in London, England last November 14. The citation award was received by business tycoon Dr. Lucio Tan. Absolut Distillers was also one of PEPP Track I awardees in 2009.

The DENR Official Seal of Approval for Track 1 awardees is valid for one year. Industries that fall under this category should have had no cases filed against them with the Pollution Adjudication Board of the DENR for three years prior to their date of application; have fully complied with all applicable environmental laws, rules and regulations; and have a proven record of superior environmental performance.

As a reward, PEPP Track 1 recipients will benefit from relaxed requirements in the frequency of submission of reports, longer validity of permits, and simplified requirements for securing an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) for expansion projects.

The PEPP covers all industrial and commercial establishments, both public and private, including agri-industrial facilities, manufacturing and commercial enterprises and other facility services.