BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan clarified that the earlier proposed site of the multi-million engineered sanitary landfill being proposed for the Baguio-La Trinidad-Itogon-Sablan-Tuba-Tublay (BLISTT) in Tapac, Ampucao, Itogon, Benguet which did not pass the prescribed standards of the National Solid Waste Commission (NSWMC) as a waste disposal site is totally different from the 29.22-hectare land that is part of Benguet Corporation’s Antamok open pit being ceded to the local government for its proposed integrated solid waste disposal facility purposely for the BLISTT area.
The local chief executive claimed the local government is already aware that the proposed landfill site in Tapac, Ampucao did not pass the stringent standards imposed by the NSWMC and the environment for the establishment of a sanitary landfill because it is part of the Lower Agno River Basin, a declared protected area, so the city is now setting its sights on the portion of the mining company’s property as the site for the proposed integrated solid waste disposal facility composed of a small landfill and available and environmentally acceptable waste to energy technologies.
He emphasized that the 29.22-hectare portion of BC’s Antamok open pit site that will be ceded to the local government encompasses the 5.11-hectare area which was pinpointed by technical personnel of the Cordillera offices of the Environment and Management Bureau (EMB-CAR) and Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB-CAR), together with responsible personnel from the city government and the mining company.
Originally, BC was supposed to ceded to the local government some 24.11 hectares from its existing Antamok open pit site which will be used for the establishment of the city’s integrated solid waste disposal facility to address the garbage disposal problems of BLISTT local governments.
However, EMB-CAR and MGB-CAR personnel found out that there was no feasible site within the original area that was supposed to be developed for the integrated solid waste disposal facility, thus, the same personnel were requested by Mayor Domogan to go back to the Antamok open pit site and look for an area that will qualify as the site for the city’s integrated solid waste disposal site that resulted to the discovery of some 5.11 hectares that is suitable for the city’s solid waste disposal project.
BC agreed to include the additional 5.11 hectares to the original 24.11 hectares portion of its Antamok open pit site that could be developed for the project which is being eyed as a permanent solution to the garbage disposal problem of the BLISTT local governments.
He confirmed that the major reason why no portion of the original 24.11 hectares portion of the Antamok open pit site did not pass the prescribed standards is that the same is located near bodies of water or within the 300-meter limit provided for under the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act and RA 9275 or the Philippine Clean Water Act.
The local government is now awaiting the final contents of the deed of usufruct between the city and BC that will encompass the additional area where the suitable site for the disposal facility will be established.
By Dexter A. See