Thursday, March 17, 2016

WB grants PHP12-M to Legazpi for closure, rehab of old open dump
By Emmanuel P. Solis

LEGAZPI CITY, March 17 (PNA) -- The World Bank (WB) has approved a PHP12.6-million grant for the closure and rehabilitation of the old open dump at the area adjacent to the Engineered Sanitary Landfill in Barangay Banquerohan at the southern portion of this city.

In an interview Wednesday, Mayor Noel Rosal said WB’s approval came after a series of consultations and evaluation sessions of the Legazpi City Unintentionally Produced Persistent Organic Pollutants (UPOP) action plan.

Rosal, Vice Mayor Vitoy Roces, Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) Bicol Director Robert Sheen led the groundbreaking ceremony of the project on March 11.

Engineer Noel Encinares, chief of the Maintenance Division of the City Engineering Office, said the PHP12.6 million grant has been downloaded by the WB to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Rosal said the civil works for the closure and rehabilitation of the two-hectare open dump have started already and are being undertaken by the CEO.

The works include site preparation, road construction, leachate collection system, slope protection, erosion control, flood control, drainage system, gas venting, final capping, aesthetic improvement and landscaping.

The project materialized after DENR Sec. Ramon Paje got impressed by the city's Engineered Sanitary Landfill and the implementation of the city’s Solid Waste Management Program during his visit in 2009.

On that same year, the Office of the City Environment and Natural Resources submitted a safe closure and rehabilitation plan to the DENR-EMB, Rosal said.

He said he plans to make a study for the building of a housing project or even golf course and other tourism-related infrastructures in that area to make sure that city lands will be used as part of the development of the city that can also benefit the constituents, particularly those people residing in the upper portion of southern villages.

Rosal asked all barangay leaders to always inform their constituents about the city’s policy of no-burning of garbage in public places, backyards, residences, and other parts of the community to reduce air pollution that can cause serious health problems and damage to the environment.

He said his administration will continue to implement the proper way of disposing waste materials to maintain the image of Legazpi as one of the best implementer of solid waste management practices in the entire Bicolandia.(PNA) JMC/FGS/EPS/CBD/EDS