BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-CAR) recently acquired three opacimeters from its central office which will be distributed in urban centers regionwide to help intensify the implementation of the government’s anti-smokebelching campaign through the conduct of roadside inspection, testing and monitoring of motor vehicles.
EMB-CAR regional director Reynaldo S. Digamo said the opacimeters will be given to La Trinidad, Benguet; Tabuk City, Kalinga and Bangued, Abra where there has been a reported significant increase in motor vehicles plying the major roads to make sure the emissions of the vehicles are within the standards prescribed under the provisions of the Philippine clean Air Act.
“We want to strengthen our anti-smokebelching campaign with the active participation of concerned local governments that is why we tried to work for the acquisition of the opacimeters and we were lucky to have been initial granted three units.” Digamo stressed.
The EMB-CAR official revealed that the newly acquired opacimeters are similar to the ones being used by the Baguio city government in the intensified implementation of its anti-smokebelching campaign through an existing local clean air ordinance.
According to him, one of the opacimeters will be given to the La Trinidad municipal government to jumpstart the implementation of the required roadside inspection, assessment, testing and monitoring of the emissions of motor vehicles considering that the municipal council is now finalizing the contents of its localized clean air ordinance.
On the other hand, he pointed out that the opacimeters for Tabuk City and Bangued will be initially turned over to the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO), the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in the said places and the concerned local governments to allow the LTO to conduct the necessary trainings for the personnel who will be handling the operation of the equipment while the localized clean air ordinances are being finalized by their respective councils.
He emphasized developing localities in the region must already put in place the operation of their local clean air ordinances to ensure strict compliance of motorists to the prescribed amount of emissions by their motor vehicles so as to help reduce the pollutants in the air and sustain the government’s all-out campaign for clean air and guarantee the adherence of people to policies on ambient air that are already in place.
Digamo admitted the intensified anti-smokebelching campaign is considered by many people as unpopular but there is an urgent need for local governments to do so to maintain the good quality of air in their areas of jurisdiction even if there will be a significant increase of motor vehicles plying the various road networks around the region since good air quality is a gift of the present generation to the future generations of Filipinos that want to inhabit our places.
He said the agency will continue to make the appropriate representations with their central office to make sure that the Cordillera will be provided with additional units of opacimeters which will be used by other local governments in the intensified campaign for clean air in their areas of jurisdiction.