BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-CAR) reported that the local government is compliant with the writ of continuing mandamus as per the notice of decree consent issued by the Court of Appeals (CA) former 6th division that resulted to the closure of the city’s Irisan open dumpsite.
In the agency’s second semester monitoring report on the status of the closed Irisan dumpsite of Baguio City in compliance with the writ of kalikasan and continuing mandamus, EMB-CAR regional director Reynaldo S. Digamo stated that the facility is still closed for dumping and is not receiving any new collected waste and it is still secured with its perimeter fences which are thickly covered by vegetation.
Further, he noted that the former open dumpsite has not been used for dumping and is now thickly covered with natural vegetation of shrubs, grasses, weeds, and other randomly growing vegetable crops and fruits.
Digamo pointed out that the retaining walls, its buttresses, perimeter canals, storm or surface runoff canals, fence, and other engineering structures are still intact with the presence of surface runoff within the site.
On the other hand, the EMBR-CAR added that the Environmental Recycling System (ERS) machines, an alternative technology for biodegradable waste, is still operational and serving its purpose and the local government has contracted the services of a waste hauler to transport its residual waste to a sanitary landfill in the lowlands.
Digamo claimed the generated fertilizer from the ERS is being processed and packed as fertilizer for ornamental plants for the city’s parks and other private individuals requesting for the use of the compost and majority of the generated compost are for sale to private and public individuals, as well as offices.
As of December 11, 2017, a total of 761 sacks, approximately 19,025 kilos, of compost are ready for distribution 1,129 tons of raw compost are for processing.
Digamo commended the local government for its active participation in the various activities and projects on solid waste management with the city joining the regular recycling collection events, clean 500 and Clean 1,000 events, active membership in the regional ecology center and hosting the venue for “Adopt an estero” program as well as in pursuing the Bayan Ko, Linis Ko trash program of the agency.
However, the EMB-CAR recommended to the local government to establish or construct a sump pond for the collection of surface runoff prior to its release to the lower canals as well as periodic cleaning or clearing of the vegetation surrounding the runoff canals and perimeter fences; pursue the development of the site into an ecological wellness park and to rigorously pursue the memorandum of agreement for the establishment of the integrated solid waste management facility.
The EMB-CAR report was transmitted to the Office of the Solicitor-General for submission to the CA in compliance with the conditions of the writ of kalikasan that was issued against the local government for its open dumpsite.
By Dexter A. See