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The Ducomi Pier – saving a worldclass dive-site

November 28th, 2008 · 13 Comments

The Dumaguete Coconut Mills Inc. will renovate “The Pier” or “Ducomi” as it is known in the diving world. The underwater world of DUCOMI is very unique for several factors. The macro-life is in the variety and density well known all over the world. Also divers who are not into the small stuff experienced an atmosphere which is hard to top.  

At present are several meetings with dive-operators and environmental experts discussing options and possibilities to conserve or rescue even a part of this underwater wonder at the Ducomi Pier.

Here is the letter as sent out by the corporation on November 26, 2008.


                Just recently, the Board of Directors of DUCOM approved the budget for the repair of the steel piles and concrete slabs and beams of our pier. This project was supposed to be scheduled early this year but we held it in abeyance the approval of the owners.

                We deeply regret to say that this project necessitates the scraping of the nudibranches and other living things which consider the pillars as their home but we have to undertake such costly move in order to avoid further damage to our installation. If we don’t do this now, we would be incurring much greater cost in the future, which we can’t afford.

                The project is scheduled to start this coming month and the contractor will be mobilizing this weekend. As we have no idea yet on the details of their repair methology, we remain hanging on our decision whether or not to continue allowing diving on the early stages while creatures still exist for the nature lovers to see.

                What a waste, but we have no choice. We hope to preserve, conserve, retrieve or replace those marine beauties for them to still be visible after the repair works. Frankly we need them as a living proof that our industrial effluent is not polluted. It took years for them to build up on the pillars; we don’t want to loose them in a wink of an eye.

                If you have any suggestions or comment about their conservation, please feel free to communicate with us. We need environmentalists like you.


                                                                                                                Sincerely yours,               


                                                                                                                Romunaldo S. Domingo

                                                                                                                Plant Manager

We will report the next weeks about the development and the achievment of all involved parties.


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13 responses so far ↓

  • 1 freddy // Dec 3, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    so sad to hear this , which means I may have no chance to visit this famous site in my next trip to Dumaguete

  • 2 Bryan Liang // Dec 7, 2008 at 10:38 pm

    I am from Taiwan and I have been there twice.
    The pier is a very very good diving site. Plz try to keep it!
    Without it, Dumaguette will lose lots of divers.

  • 3 Alexandra // Dec 17, 2008 at 7:04 am

    The Ducomi Pier is really unique and its marine life is very precious. The PIER is well known as one of the best dive spots worldwide, many divers, like underwater photographers, journalists and tourism managers keep an eye on this special place on earth and lots of people returns to Dumaguete just because of the PIER. I can only hope instantly that this natural wonder will not be destroyed just in case of short-term decisions. All over the world people have learned, that it is very important to protect our blue planet.
    Even Mr. Obama the president elect of the USA will change the wrong decisions took place in the past and will do anything to protect our world. It is an enduring question to save a place like the PIER – the tourists are willing to pay for it now and in the future – but still as long as it is alive. Destroyed in a moment it will take years to recover – if possible at all. There are really very rare species. Please keep it save – you are responsible for it. Where there is a will there is a way. Lots of people are interestet to save this maritime treasure chest. Please talk about it it is really worth a closer look.
    Alexandra, Germany

  • 4 Peter de Vos // Dec 26, 2008 at 8:45 am

    I have no idea who put the initial letter from Ducomi Pier on the net, but that information is no longer correct. Ducomi management is jointly with the dive operators evaluating the best methods to repair damages on the construction, so that there will be minimal damage to the environment. Anyway, only around 10 pillars seem to be affected and damages are only locally. So I don’t think we should make such a big fuss at this stage

  • 5 Doy Tan // Dec 29, 2008 at 5:38 pm


    There must be another way to improve your operations without destroying the marine life…

    Doy Tan
    Mandaluyong City

  • 6 Dr Bob Whorton // Dec 30, 2008 at 1:31 am

    If this step is allowed to take place, the world will lose what is quite frankly one of the most unique micro environments in the world…
    We have to put things into the correct context here… Costs can be outweighed, as this environment is priceless and irreplaceable.
    The company cannot afford it? Surely the Philippines Government (headed by a diver) can step in and save this environment by underwriting a replacement installation adjacent to the current pier (preferably to the right side)…
    This is after all a HUGE asset to the local community, and has made diving in Philippines a “must-do” .
    Maybe too the money ripped off divers and photographers in excessive pisspotical fees could accountable for renovation instead of the hole it currently vanishes into…

  • 7 paul // Jan 2, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    fact is that each pillar might be cleand a few feet from the bottom as there is most of the damage…
    the most interesting aquatic life is on the bottom area. that stuff will be gone.

    I understand that the dive-operators will play it down as they use the Pier as one of their BIG promo on their websites, so each report about repairing or destroying parts of the pier might cost them customer.

    It is more than fair enough and I understand them, but for me it’s unfair to customers trying to make money out of something what might be there or not.

  • 8 Malcolm Q // Mar 16, 2009 at 4:53 am

    This is one of the best dive sites I have visted in over 240 dives. I hope the work to renovate the pier will not mean that this magical dive site is lost forever. Follow this link if you would like to see what the site was like in April 2008.

  • 9 Andy // Jun 19, 2009 at 9:54 pm

    June 19, 2009.
    I dived the pier today, having been advised it will be closed to divers at the end of this month. There is much silting to the seabed but almost all the legs are still as before, covered in gorgeous, thriving corals, moluscs, fish and invertabrates. I was relieved to see it so. I believe this area will recover even if the pier was totally stripped. After all, none of the uw life was there before the existing pier was built.
    I hope the excessive fees charged by operators under the disguise of ‘sanctuary’ actually go to some uw benefit and not to provide new cars for the mayor.
    When will they offer an annual pass like they do at Bunaken (Manado, Indonesia)?
    The pier is still a great divesite, I hope they keep it open and sort out the dodgy ‘sanctuary’ fee fiasco.

  • 10 michelle tourism student in Dumaguete // Jul 8, 2009 at 10:29 am

    please conserve the” DOCUMI”,don’t destroy it…….if there is no choice anymore please try your best not to cause too much damage in the site because its not just the scenery of the seabed that we are talking about its the life existing species under, living in that very beautiful dive site…and its not just that there will be a big lost in the diving tourism industry in Dumaguete as we all know that its one of the best dive sites worldwide..tourist are motivated to come as often as they could, aiming to visit the certain site and if it will be destroyed there will be a lost in the business near it that benefits….please do something….

  • 11 Neil Stead // Dec 15, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    From what I hear on Scubaboard, it’s too late :-(

  • 12 Danilo Ramirez // Apr 17, 2010 at 9:39 am

    This is Danny from Dauin…As a diver, i don’t really want to destroy this mother nature treasure. It is unique underwater and this dive site is known globally, please protect this, make a second option for improving the pier. On my option, don’t destroy the pier just make an extension instead. of course, you will lose lots of money if you’re going to destroy it. It will take years to recover the pillars underwater!Save it!

  • 13 Rhoody // Apr 27, 2010 at 9:47 am

    sadly it is too late …

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